Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The hen-peckee's dilemma

Dr. Helen points out that although a scientific study may have determined hen-pecking to be counterproductive, there isn't much that the man can do about it under the present legal regime:
Yes, hen-pecking doesn’t work and men are resentful but in today’s modern marriage, what is he to do? If he raises his voice, he might be charged with domestic abuse, he doesn’t want to get mad because he might lose control which society frowns on and finally, if the wife wants to fight back, she has the force of the state, the legal system, and the culture on her side. He has little recourse.
And some wonder why men are less than entirely enthusiastic about entering a state of hen-pecked matrimony... although I suppose a hen-pecked husband could always slip his wife the relevant copy of Psychology Today.  She might not trust the church or 6,000 years of recorded human history, but she can hardly deny science, right?

After all, studies show.

I have to admit, it is remarkable how often both men and women stick religiously to intra-relationship tactics that haven't ever worked before, presumably under the mistaken impression that just one more time is going to do the trick.

18 comments:

Trust said...

If this were reversed, if we were talking about women who were accommodating and men who resented it, there wouldn't be a study. Just an observation that the women were nicer and cared more about their husbands being happy and how men were brutes.

This "study" didn't care why from the man's perspective, only the women's. It didn't account for male honor. I, for one, am not afraid to voice disagreements with my wife. I simply often view it as unnecessary in most cases. It's disrespectful to try to control someone else's opinions. Sure, that's a common female tactic, but they are not wired for respect the way men are.

Trust said...

Also, Dr. Helen talks of cost/benefit. And she is right. In this case, aside from the consequences of abuse allegations etc., what is the benefit to disagreeing with a wife on insignificant individual opinions? On the other hand, as most men over the age of 30 know, it takes little to trigger a firestorm with a wife. "I don't think you need another pair of shoes" is hardly the battle a husband and father with 9,656,572 things on his plate cares to have.

Desiderius said...

"it is remarkable how often both men and women stick religiously to intra-relationship tactics that haven't ever worked before"

"before" has been purged from their minds.

Progress doesn't care about what worked, or didn't, "before". It's a Brave New World.

GAHCindy said...

There's a reason Paul instructed Christian women to respect their husbands. The only person who can do anything about hen-pecking is the hen. ;-)

fc6cedc2-d6a8-11e2-b860-000bcdcb471e said...

You can clip the beak without violence or raising your voice. I suggest dread game unless you are a quick thinker. Then you can confuse her on an emotional level and she will back down. Don't try reasoning with her, that works on maybe 1 out of 100 women.

Its temporary though. Every woman has ignorant little twats that she socializes with operating like 40 devils on her shoulder. Eventually she can build up resistance to that nonsense but it takes time.

Bob Wallace said...

"There's a reason Paul instructed Christian women to respect their husbands. "

He told them to shut up and not teach.

standwatie said...

I can't speak for others, but although I didn't initiate my divorce, reduced access to my children, paying out cash and prizes, and having the force of the state brought to bear upon me are a small price to pay for freedom from the eight years of shit that I put up with. If it's an either/or choice, I'll take this "or" every day of the week.

I have to admit, it is remarkable how often both men and women stick religiously to intra-relationship tactics that haven't ever worked before, presumably under the mistaken impression that just one more time is going to do the trick.

I was bright enough to know I needed to adjust my code when my program did not perform as I intended, but completely clueless to this in real life. Better late than never ...

JCclimber said...

Dread and outcome indifference are the only way to reverse this in many marriages.
First you have to improve yourself or there won't be any dread, just mocking.

But most men are the ones living in dread, dread that she will start the henpecking, the sarcastic tone, the eye-rolling, the sharp little digs. So the egg-shell walking begins.

It is remarkable how when the dynamic reverses itself, how much happier BOTH spouses are with the new balance.

I wouldn't recommend dread game until you have the outcome indifference soaked into your brain.

SarahsDaughter said...

If this were reversed, if we were talking about women who were accommodating and men who resented it, there wouldn't be a study.

True true. It made me laugh trying to picture a husband complaining that his wife defers to him too much. I've heard of it, had a man tell me he has no interest in biblical submission from his wife. But I can't imagine there are enough of these men for a study. Are there?

Jack Amok said...

Every time the topic of divorce theft comes up, I think of a guy I worked with years ago. He claimed he was 2nd cousins with some Italian mobsters from Philly. Said his family didn't believe in divorce or alimony. They did believe in widowers however.

Once again the segments of society less constrained by The Law seem to have a one-up on the rest of us.

it is remarkable how often both men and women stick religiously to intra-relationship tactics that haven't ever worked before.

For a large segment (not sure if it's a majority or not) of those people, the strategies that do work don't seem to be particularly viable options either though. I rather doubt the average Gamma has it in him to employ Dread Game (or much of any other sort of Game for that matter).

To mutate a metaphor (or is it an aphorism?), to a man with a glass hammer, no problem looks very much like a nail.

VryeDenker said...

As with all horrible situations, prevention is better than cure. It's much easier to win the little battle at the start of the relationship than the nuclear stand-off 10 years down the line. Especially since your "nukes" would have become mere painted silo's while she would have amassed the real thing.

Doom said...

Henpecking just told me the particular woman needed sex. The more she pecked the sooner, harder, longer, and more often, she got sex. It really did work for me. As to what she was going on about? It didn't matter, like Pavlov's experiment, as soon as she started in I knew I was going to get lucky so couldn't really hear her actual words. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. It worked, beautifully. I don't know what to tell guys that can't or won't. I, personally, have no troubles with the nitpickers.

Eric Mueller said...

No, they won't believe science. I tried to show my ex-wife science that demonstrated her Twilight vampire tween pr0n was as destructive to her mind and our marriage as any of the stuff I would have looked at, and she refused to accept it because it's not nude. So her emotional pr0n was acceptable in her mind no matter what science said.

It wasn't just the vampire stuff, it was True Blood, soap operas, Big Bang Theory, and all the rest of that stuff that demonstrates a healthy Christian marriage (sarcasm doesn't carry through text).

MarkyMark said...

In light of what Dr. Helen said WRT man's standing on society and the legal system, it's better to just remain SIGNLE...

ThirdMonkey said...

"A wife of noble character is her husband's crown, but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones." Proverbs 12:4.

I have watched my mother hen-peck my father for 34 years. He has degenerative disk disease and advanced osteoporosis. Some would say that is a result of bad genetics, or possibly poor nutrition. Environment is more likely the cause.

Dread game has turned my marriage from good to great. Anytime my wife calls and asks what I'm doing or what I've been up to, I always give her an answer that involves hookers/strippers/younger women. She knows I'm kidding, but not knowing what I'm actually doing messes with her. On the rare occasions that she gets hen-pecky, I instantly get cold and treat her with contempt. She's told me it scares the crap out of her. Although I've never laid a finger on her, she knows I am capable of violence and destruction. She also knows that if she ever leaves, that I will deploy the nuclear option. She has no idea what that actually entails, but knows it will be bad for her, as I have been to several countries and speak more than one language.

Even though I would never cheat, hurt, or leave her, she still knows I have the means and opportunity to do that. Cuts down on the bitchiness.

Doom is right. Sometimes, she just needs a good pounding, too.

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