Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A useful phrase

Cailcorishev observes a link between Christian theology and the female predilection for control freakdom:
The traditional Christian viewpoint is that it's Original Sin. Eve violated her husband's headship by eating the apple without his permission and then encouraging him to follow her example, so her descendants are cursed with the temptation to commit the same sin. Ever seen a woman in a restaurant second-guessing her husband's order and commenting on how much salad dressing he uses? It's the apple all over again.
It is remarkable how hard many women find it to keep their mouths shut whenever someone is doing something in front of them. It doesn't matter what it is, the mere fact that a man is doing something is usually enough to inspire their mouths to shift into gear, regardless of whether they know anything about what he is doing or not.

There is one phrase, however, that enables a man to keep control of the situation in all circumstances. It's a reliable workhorse:

"I am not interested in your opinion."

This works whether she actually has a relevant comment or not. It's not defensive, it's not aggressive, it's not uncivil, it is just a very clear indication that the man has taken responsibility, he has the situation under control, and she should stop trying to intervene. It also doesn't give her any ammunition to argue the man's position, as she often will if he says "I know what I'm doing" or otherwise disagrees with her advice. If she doesn't get the message and tries to interject again anyhow, it can be repeated with a little more emphasis.

"What part of 'I am not interested in your opinion' did you not understand?"

This puts her back on the defensive, but makes it clear that it's her own fault. She was already informed to stay out of it, but she IS NOT LISTENING, which of course we all know is something that women consider to be A VERY BAD THING.

Rational argument in these situations serves no purpose whatsoever. I've seen women justify their criticism of men who point out they are doing exactly what the woman herself was doing in the same situation. Unless you're in the mood for hamster-wrestling, neutral resistance to her instinctive control freak tendencies.

The other tactic that can work, but is a bit more negative, is to turn and hand whatever you're doing to the woman and say: "if you want it done your way, then do it yourself." Then walk away and leave her to it. She'll be angry, but after a few instances of this, she'll learn to stop interfering unless she actually wants to be stuck with the task.

56 comments:

JCclimber said...

She'll remember for a week or so, a month if she has a more tame hamster.

Adam failed the ultimate S-test. Don't copy Adam. Nor copy Samson either.

Crowhill said...

Yes, but I would add "on that subject." A blanket "I'm not interested in your opinion" may go a little too far.

Athor Pel said...

I was fishing with my grandmother once. One of the only times actually. I was maybe 8 years old, maybe younger.

She watched me cast a few times and then began to tell me how I should be doing it. I told her, "You do it your way, I'll do it mine."

She told my Dad and Grandpa about it later. They thought it was the funniest thing they had ever heard.

Conscientia Republicae said...

My mother in law took my five year old to see the newest TMNT movie. As they were walking out he told her "Mimi, bad idea."

Hanns Strudle extra gooey said...

After several times of my wife rearranging the dishwasher after I've loaded it, she now has the dubious honor of doing the dishes from now till death do us part.

verusconditio said...

Crowhill,

Most women will smell your additional phrase for what it is. Fear. Don't modify it. Most women will know exactly what you mean. They might turn it around on you and say you that you never care for their opinion. That doesn't mean that they don't understand what you meant. Ask me how I know?

Been there. Done that.

~ Stingray

SarahsDaughter said...

The other tactic that can work, but is a bit more negative, is to turn and hand whatever you're doing to the woman

Guess who's learning how to sharpen the chainsaw chain...

Crowhill said...

Stingray, it has nothing to do with fear and everything to do with respect. But I really don't give a crap about your experience. I've used this myself and it accomplishes the goal.

Vox said...

Stingray, it has nothing to do with fear and everything to do with respect. But I really don't give a crap about your experience. I've used this myself and it accomplishes the goal.

You're wrong, Crowhill. It's both stupid and indicative of conflict-avoidance. A woman knows perfectly well that the statement refers to her opinion offered at that moment. The only reason to offer it is because you are afraid she might take it the wrong way.

That's not to say that you haven't gotten away with it, especially if you are a naturally pedantic person who spells out the completely obvious to everyone. But for normal people, who communicate in normal way, to make a particular point of your statement being specific rather than general is indicative of weakness.

Most women, like Stingray, would pick up on it in an instant and push. So, while your advice may work fine for you, it is bad advice.

verusconditio said...

My apologies, Crowhill. Maybe your alpha is full up. It would work in that instance. But for a guy who is not full up on alpha, who is just starting, it comes off as supplicating from someone who is trying to stand his ground. It comes off as a point of weakness to be manipulated.

~ Stingray
For a woman whom has earned your respect and gives her respect to you, yes.

verusconditio said...

Ignore the last sentence please. It was meant to be deleted and somehow I missed it.

Robert What? said...

Good tip, thanks! I'll definitely put it to use.

jimmy-jimbo said...

I think that statement is too harsh and abrupt if it is to your wife or girlfriend, even to a coworker or aquaintance. I would simply say "Thanks for letting me know" and then continue as if she didn't say anything. Only in escalation would I say "I am not interested in your opinion."

Often a woman will say things to get you to change. That's the operative word "change". The problem results when you actually do change because she loses respect for you and you actually change into something she doesn't want. Or you thinks you can't change and that's bad too. In these cases, I learned to say "And I'll continue to do that".

Ghost said...

The backup is actually my go to. "Here. All yours. Have a blast." By the time I've loaded my pipe, she's apologizing and getting out of the way. Or, sometimes, I get out of some pointless chore. Win win.

Lamont Cranston said...

Instead of "Okay - YOU do it YOUR way," I used "Ah, I hear the sweet sound of a volunteer," and offer the hammer. That usually shuts that crap down.

pdwalker said...

Yes, nip that bad behaviour in the bud, or she'll make you miserable.

There is always Clint Eastwoods line from one of his movies, "if I wanted your opinion, I'd have beat it out of you". Save that for truly terrible behaviour.

Feather Blade said...

I used "Ah, I hear the sweet sound of a volunteer," and offer the hammer.

I like that. My father's mother-in-law asked Dad to carve the turkey one Thanksgiving and then tried to micro-manage how he did it. He handed her the carving knife without a word and went to tinker with his computer. She hasn't tried to get him to carve since.

This tactic is also useful against children who complain about, for example, the lunch their mother packs for them to take to school.

...and that's the story of how I ended up making my own lunches starting is second grade.

Doom said...

Nah, her sin was not breaking with man, but with God. Although, if you read the bible with some precision, you will see, for a woman, there is some great similarity as God Himself puts it. I have no doubt that women, before the fall, obviously during the fall, or after the fall... will fundamentally be no different in this way. It is there nature.

Adam, before the fall, simply didn't care. He did what he did. She didn't have much choice, and she still doesn't. She is stuck with man. She doesn't have to like it. But if he can shrug off, or even stuff, her passive-aggressive nature, he wins. And this actually pleases her, from what I have seen. She's baiting and testing our fitness, nothing more. Doesn't even know it, she anyway, and some men sadly. If not, he's... a friend. Just don't be a friend, and deal with her nature, fallen or not, and you will be fine, womanwise.

I don't know, I kind of like it. It keeps me on my toes. And, once in a while, she is actually right. If so, and she is being a tard about it, I'll figure out the complete truth of it and jack her with it. Done it before, and if I find another woman I find worth having and affording to have in my home, I'll do it again. Pole dancing Catholic women are rare, but I know there has to be one somewhere. Or a bellydancer. Maybe even a bit more exotic, if only for my eyes. Yum!

Vox said...

I think that statement is too harsh and abrupt if it is to your wife or girlfriend, even to a coworker or aquaintance. I would simply say "Thanks for letting me know" and then continue as if she didn't say anything.

It's not too harsh. It is the simple truth. I have zero interest in hearing anyone's opinion about how I am doing something when I am already engaged in doing it. If I want an opinion, or if I don't know how to do it, I will not hesitate to ask.

I once had a woman attempt to interfere when I was CUTTING MYSELF A PIECE OF CHEESE. Forget being too harsh and abrupt; she was lucky I didn't stab her.

Vox said...

Yum!

Seriously, Doom, you've got to drop that habit. "Yum" makes you sound like a teenage girl and I don't think that's quite the effect you're shooting for.

Crowhill said...

The only reason to offer it is because you are afraid she might take it the wrong way.

Hmm. I suppose the point of language is no longer to make it plain what you mean by what you say.

Contempt is a very dangerous thing in a marriage, and "I am not interested in your opinion" can be taken as contemptuous.

Trust said...

@ I think that statement is too harsh and abrupt if it is to your wife or girlfriend
___

What I think is harsh is for a woman, often publicly in front of friends, to give her man the indignity of not letting him peacefully decide for himself how much salad dressing to use.

b1bae96e-6447-11e3-b6bb-000f20980440 said...

I will do a sideways glance with raised eyebrow myself, which on occasions even elicits a "sorry"

After several times of my wife rearranging the dishwasher after I've loaded it, she now has the dubious honor of doing the dishes from now till death do us part.

There was a comedian who had a line along the lines of "My wife, for some reason, doesn't think the dishwasher is capable of washing dishes if they are placed plate,plate, bowl, bowl, plate, bowl"

Vox said...

Contempt is a very dangerous thing in a marriage, and "I am not interested in your opinion" can be taken as contemptuous.

And you think it is not contemptuous to treat an adult like a child incapable of even the simplest decisions and tasks?

"I am not interested in your opinion" is downright gentle compared to what I would actually be thinking in such circumstances. Of course, I absolutely hate control freaks of either sex, so I am perhaps less inclined to tolerate their nonsense than some.

Corvinus said...

Pole dancing Catholic women are rare, but I know there has to be one somewhere. Or a bellydancer. Maybe even a bit more exotic, if only for my eyes. Yum!

You talk like you're still living in the 1970s. Seriously. And Catholic ethnicities, at least in the USA, have subpar women. But if you think that Irish plain janes, short brunette Italians, or funny-looking Polish butterfaces are all that, knock yourself out.

cailcorishev said...

Hmm. I suppose the point of language is no longer to make it plain what you mean by what you say.

That's the point of language for men (and not all of them). The point of language for women is mostly to give their mouths something to do while they communicate with body language, tone, and everything else.

Think of words as a carrier signal.

Crowhill said...

And you think it is not contemptuous to treat an adult like a child incapable of even the simplest decisions and tasks?

There is certainly a point at which it is. I don't think my example crosses that line, but ... that's just my opinion from my experience.

@cailcorishev -- interesting comment about women's use of language. :-)

Trust said...

During sermon, a pastor said that it's in women's nature to never be satisfied, which is useful in child rearing but disastrous when carried over into their adult relationships.

Crowhill said...

BTW, on the original point about Eve and the fruit, I think it's worthwhile to consider 1 Tim. 2:14, which blames Eve's transgression on deception, which puts a slightly different flavor on how we interpret the dynamic in Genesis 3. The passage implies that Adam's rebellion was in full knowledge of what he was doing, while Eve rebelled (at least in part) because she was deceived.

Crowhill said...

Okay, now I'm not using words very clearly. Vox asked, "And you think it is not contemptuous to treat an adult like a child incapable of even the simplest decisions and tasks?"

Yes, of course that is contemptuous. My point a couple comments above was that I don't think adding "on that subject" constitutes treating a person in that way.

the bandit said...

You're getting confused, Crowhill. Nobody said adding "on that subject" is treating a person like a child; they said it was at best pedantic and at worst a sign of weakness.

What Vox is saying is that if you reach the point where you have to tell a woman "I am not interested in your opinion," THE WOMAN has already been treating you contemptuously.

Crowhill said...

@bandit, you may be right. Reading it that way, it is certainly contemptuous for a woman to treat a man as if he can't do things like cut his own cheese. (Love that example, BTW.)

I absolutely agree that a man has to put his foot down and make it perfectly clear that he will not take that kind of behavior. I would also say that I don't think it helps to respond to contempt with contempt.

But maybe that's just my approach. I believe in being firm in my conviction -- and not taking any crap -- but in trying to be calm in how I manage it.

MNL said...

@Crowhill... I too think the original phrasing could come across as abrupt. Maybe the curtness is appropriate in some relationships--perhaps to set the boundaries in a new relationship or if the verbal challenge over salad dressing is actually part of some recent and far greater agenda on her part. But after, say, 5 years of marriage, for example, such abruptness could come across as too much--almost as if the speaker is hyper-sensitive to others' opinions and is actually *not* alpha material.

If this happened to me and my wife of 25 years critiqued my use of salad dressing at a restaurant, I might first agree & amplify. I'd say, "Yep, I'm starting on the anabolic salad dressing diet. Could you please ask the waiter over there for more?" ...And maybe I'd flex my bicep or something if I wanted to make her giggle.

But if you want something stronger, but less defensive, you could say (without breaking gaze), "It's a good thing I didn't marry you for your opinion on salad dressing."

Michael said...

@Crowhill You're over analyzing. Just say it with a wry smile, or even say it playfully with a big smile (while looking her straight in the eyes). Either way it gets the point across, puts you back in control, and won't hurt the snowflake's feelings.

Cadders said...

A even look straight into her eyes and a firm 'I am NOT going to have a discussion about this.' - and then make sure you don't - works for me.

Ben Cohen said...

There are some good lines here. Is wittiness a learned trait or something you are born with?

vashine said...

This forum is what used to happen... men sitting around the card table, the billiards table, out in the wilderness on a hunting trip, in a smoking club, in the saunas and baths, free from the presence of hand-wringing women, handing down priceless wisdom and no-nonsense tactics to the younger generations for keeping their women in line.

Never let women into our spaces again. Ever.

@Crowhill... two nights ago I called a professional ballet dancer (a solid 9) "stupid" to her face. It was not flirting, I did not even do it with a smile. I was obviously and unabashedly judging her, to her face. And that is the only word I used after she begged me to tell her what I was thinking about some story she had just told me. She still happily made out with me and were I a weaker man I would have smashed that divine ass 'til the cows came home. She was more than willing.

The snowflakes are not snowflakes. Tiptoeing around them wreaks of fear and the only women who truly like fear on a man are the uber-controlling, feminazi ones, the worst of the worst. And deep down even those pseudo-women don't respect fear in a man and will eventually scorn the coward they've latched onto.

subject by design said...

I agree, it is harsh. That sort of comment cuts me to the core. But, that means I will remember it and I'm less likely to repeat my contemptuous, disrespectful behavior. It is a type of training. Sometimes it smarts.

@Sarah's Daughter, are there youtube videos or something that show how to sharpen a chain saw blade? Blade sharpening is a mystery to me. I'm so happy to let the man do it.

Ghost said...

Ben,
A lot of it comes from just losing the filter and saying the first thing that comes to your head, and having the courage to say it with confidence.

cailcorishev said...

I'm a fairly pedantic person myself, so I used to agonize over exactly the right words to use -- especially with women -- and take others' words as if they put the same care into choosing them. It was very hard for me to accept that words don't matter, and I still spend too much time thinking about the best wording many times. But the words just don't matter, no matter how annoying that is to those of us who speak as if they do.

If you don't want a woman to sense contempt, don't say it contemptuously (although I think contempt is appropriate if she's telling you how to cut cheese). That's all. Doesn't matter what you say; only matters how you say it. I think I finally, fully accepted that truth when I was accused of emotional abuse based on the way I said the word "yeah."

SarahsDaughter said...

@Sarah's Daughter, are there youtube videos or something that show how to sharpen a chain saw blade? Blade sharpening is a mystery to me.

Yes, there are videos, and step by step instructions.

I'm so happy to let the man do it.

Yep, me too and that is why I should have kept my damn mouth shut. But nooo gotta mention just a couple times that maybe it would saw better if the chain was sharpened and voila.


Doesn't matter what you say; only matters how you say it.

It didn't even dawn on me that my new chore was as a result of what I had said until I read this today. It was so nonchalant. I had already said something about sharpening it once and then yesterday I said, "Do you think it would cut better if it were sharpened?" To which he replied, "how 'bout you learn how to sharpen the chain tomorrow."

Well, shit...

Michael Maier said...

@ SD: That's pretty damn funny, right there.

Dexter said...

I go with "can't talk... eating" at mealtimes.

Johnny Caustic said...

@Crowhill, what this long discussion really boils down to is tolerance for (or liking for) conflict. Vox is very comfortable with conflict, downright enjoys it sometimes. You are less comfortable.

And women instantly know this about you when you say something like "I'm not interested in your opinion on that subject." That's why Stingray says, correctly, "Most women will smell your additional phrase for what it is. Fear."

So why do you say, "it has nothing to do with fear and everything to do with respect"? Because, like almost every man who isn't near the top of the sociosexual hierarchy (that's 99% of us), your behaviors that follow from that fear have become habit, and you've built up decades of justifications for them. So you don't notice the fear any more; you say it has "everything to do with respect."

Well, no it doesn't. Some of it is respect, but most of it is your aversion to conflict. You've repressed most of your knowledge of this fact. I know this because it's true of most men, including me.

I think that the single biggest (though not the only) determinant of our places in the sociosexual hierarchy is aversion to conflict. Alphas and sigmas have little aversion and often seek out conflict. (After a lifetime of this, they're pretty good at winning those conflicts too.) The rest of us have various degrees of fear, but we usually justify it to ourselves as being polite, respectful, "good men", etc. It's more comfortable to rationalize one's own behavior than seek a higher place in the hierarchy. But women aren't fooled; they read these signals instinctively and instantly know our places in the hierarchy. You aren't aware of the signal you're sending, but they sure are.

As an exercise, I would suggest you try saying things like "I am not interested in your opinion" and other "disrespectful" things that "may go a little too far." While you're doing it, pay attention to your emotions while you're saying it. It will open your eyes to what keeps deltas delta.

John Rampton said...

A phrase that I have found particularly useful in the workplace a couple of times: "Sweethear, (said with very condescendingly smarmy sweetness) if you find fulfillment in being a petty, micromanaging dictator, then quit your job, go home, get barefoot and pregnant, and have a whole brood of kids, because they will certainly follow your demands to your satisfaction much better than anyone here ever could." This can work well one-on-one, or in a group, although group pressure is a bit more risky to play with, if she handles the social pressure negatively.

John Rampton said...

Just an afterthought, but it's interesting that this subject of Adam and Eve was brought up. Many people understand that it was simply Eve's pressuring of Adam, which persuaded him to partake of the fruit. I always found this distasteful; insulting of Adam's dignity, because it sets him up in the discourse as being a Delta or lower. And I just have real difficulty accepting that the man which God set on the earth to be the head of the human race was anything less than an alpha. It's true that God decreed some things which would level the playing field a bit more. Just imagine if women didn't have to bear their own children in suffering, how indifferent, even cruel they'd be towards them. But there are a couple of things which persuade otherwise. One is Genesis 2:24, which commands a man to leave his father and mother, and cleave unto his wife. The second is Adam's interscene response to God, referring to Eve not just as "the woman" but "the woman thou gavest me to be with." It says that Adam was eating the fruit because he knew that if he didn't, he would be disavowing himself from God's commandment.

cailcorishev said...

St. Thomas Aquinas broke Adam's sin down into something like nine specific different types of sin, and Eve's into something like five. So Eve's usurpation of Adam's authority and his following her lead were only part of it -- but an important part, in today's context of feminism and effeminacy.

liberranter said...

After several times of my wife rearranging the dishwasher after I've loaded it, she now has the dubious honor of doing the dishes from now till death do us part.

That's laundry in our house. After being told on a few occasions that the way I was doing it "isn't the way I do it!", she now has an extra chore to perform each week. One wonders what part of "cause and effect" eludes women so thoroughly and completely.

liberranter said...

During sermon, a pastor said that it's in women's nature to never be satisfied, which is useful in child rearing but disastrous when carried over into their adult relationships.

And what was the interval, in microseconds, between when the last syllables of that message left the pastor's lips and when he was tarred, feathered, and run out of the church on a rail by the hens?

John Rampton said...

I didn't articulate the point very well. Eve through her sin put Adam in a difficult position. If he refused, he would stay while Eve left, but then he would have to disregard, or break, if you will, God's commandment to cleave unto his wife. Adam chose what he may have seen the intent was, all along. Which was for man to make his own choice to assume the knowledge of good and evil. If God had made this choice for man, then God would be the author of sin.

Akulkis said...

Pole dancing Catholic women are rare, but I know there has to be one somewhere. Or a bellydancer. Maybe even a bit more exotic, if only for my eyes. Yum!

If you think a woman will acquire such dubious skills, and reserve them "for your eyes only," you're more naive than I ever would have imagined up until today.

Akulkis said...

Seriously, Doom, you've got to drop that habit. "Yum" makes you sound like a teenage girl and I don't think that's quite the effect you're shooting for.

I know of only one man who can pull that "yum" thing off without coming off as a retard... and he's a master hypnotist who first learned the art of hypnosis from SF guys while serving as a sniper in Vietnam. Mark Cunningham if anyone is interested in who that is.

Akulkis said...

I agree, it is harsh. That sort of comment cuts me to the core. But, that means I will remember it and I'm less likely to repeat my contemptuous, disrespectful behavior. It is a type of training. Sometimes it smarts.

Bingo! Women tend to be avoidant of bad experiences... if it's bad enough and with no payoff.

Adding the "on this subject" gives the woman hope that she can micromanage some OTHER aspect of your life... thus inviting her to try again.

Most women truly do not understand that men do NOT appreciate constant, unending chatter.... especially if it reeks of second-guessing and backseat driving.

Akulkis said...

One wonders what part of "cause and effect" eludes women so thoroughly and completely.

Having their own decisions and behaviors blocked by various white-knights, including their father, schools, colleges, HR departments, and the entire legal system for starters.

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