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THEORYMansplaining decoded (self.RedPillWomen)

submitted by loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor

The meaning of words and conversation

Words are vehicles of ideas and conversation is the highway upon which these vehicles drive. However, the purpose for operating these vehicles is vastly different for men and women.

People drive motor vehicles for two main reasons. 1. To get from point A to point B. 2. To enjoy the ride in your vehicle of choice. Some people drive strictly for one of the two reasons and some people drive because of a mixture of the two reasons.

Likewise, men hold conversation primarily for the content of what's being said, the destination. Women hold conversation primarily for the connection that results from conversing, the journey.

Human beings and human doings

The idea that women are human beings and men are human doings is well established in TRP communities and discussed from time to time. Here, I will focus on how this concept relates to male and female conversation styles.

As a human doing, the default male setting is to not exist unless he's worthy of existence. Through accomplishment - doing - a man becomes worthy of existence. Whether this is true or not is irrelevant, this is the underlying premise behind many male thoughts, feelings and actions. Therefore, everything needs a goal to achieve, a mission to complete and a destination to reach.

As a human being, the default female setting is to exist, period. No reasons or goals necessary. A woman need not justify her actual existence, rather, she needs to fill this existence with more existence. She does this by connecting with other people. The purpose is the journey, not the destination.

As a side note - men tend to enjoy working with things and women tend to enjoy working with people. This is reflected in many areas of life.

The purpose of conversation

We can now understand why there's often a huge chasm between men and women when we try to converse with one another. Especially between husband and wife. Your husband needs you to get to the point but for you there might not be a point, there's the journey of expressing yourself.

This chasm is so wide that it causes tension even between the best of couples.

A caring husband wants to pleas and indulge his wife by listening to her carry on about all the details of her day. However, his mind is wired to seek a goal, a problem to solve, a point of summary. Listening to you ramble on is torturous to him like the cat trying to chase the laser beam. Despite his best efforts, his mind will tune her out and he'll be accused of not listening. This in turn will make conversation with his wife an anxiety inducing activity which he'll engage in anyway because it's a challenge to conquer.

OTOH, the wife has emotional needs and part of these needs is for her to speak her mind to those who are close with her. Long conversation helps her bond with her husband and can even relieve her stress (often transferring it to him). If she can't converse with her husband, the marriage will be dry and dull for her.

This leads us to the stalemate of all stalemates - she needs to speak her mind and heart, he can't follow. As a result, she may feel like he isn't listening to her and therefore doesn't care about her. He may feel tremendous anxiety at the prospect of having to listen to her ramble on. He'll feel falsely accused of not caring. Thus, countless arguments ensue.

Some solutions

It's clear that husband and wife need to understand each other's needs in conversation and to do their best to fulfill these needs without hurting their own needs. Here are some agreements you can reach that may help.

  • Edit - When possible, ramble to a close female friend.
  • Edit - That you let him know "I need to vent" if you don't want solutions.
  • That it be okay for him to cut the conversation at any point, even mid sentence.
  • That the conversation stop as soon as he cuts it.
  • That you don't take this personally.
  • That you not quiz him on what you said.
  • If it's clear that he missed some of what you said, let it slide.
  • That you summarize at the end.
  • That you appreciate his listening. Thank you for listening is a great way to end a conversation. Even better if it's followed by physical affection.
  • That you let him know when you want a solution and when you want him to just listen.

Conclusion

Words and conversation mean different things for men and women. For men it's about the destination, for women it's about the journey.

Due to our wiring, conversation is a necessity for women and often a stress relief. Men can spend days together in silence, conversation can be stressful and anxiety inducing.

Therefore, many misunderstandings may arise when men and women speak to each other. Men are accused of mansplaining and women are accused of rambling endlessly. These misunderstandings can cause a rift even in the best of marriages. Some basic agreements can greatly reduce these misunderstandings and increase peace and harmony in the home.

Cheers!


[–]LateralThinker133 Stars 11 points12 points  (7 children)

Some solutions

You forgot the best solution of all: get a girlfriend and dump all this on her, not your husband. She's wired to receive and reflect that stuff back; he is not. If you want to bond with your husband, the best way to do that isn't to douse him in verbal ramblings but instead skin to skin contact.

Best example EVER of this difference in verbal style is a video called, "It's Not About the Nail."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yWcEhtg7W3s

[–]Hammocknapping 9 points10 points  (3 children)

Disclaimer: Was unable to watch the video prior to commenting

The girlfriend solution could work for somethings, but not all. It can work for issues you’re having with family or friends or at work, but you cannot discuss matters related to your husband with a friend. Relationship matters should only be between a husband and wife and never expressed or revealed to someone outside the marriage.

[–]LateralThinker133 Stars 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Relationship matters should only be between a husband and wife and never expressed or revealed to someone outside the marriage.

Don't disagree. But many, many women make the mistake of venting things to their husbands that are better suited to their girlfriends over coffee. It can be torturous for men to endure it, and their tuning out only makes it worse.

you cannot discuss matters related to your husband with a friend

If you have an issue with your husband, you talk to your husband. But that isn't what we're talking about here. We're talking about women venting, or about all the pointless trivia that women relate to each other that has minimal content and is used for bonding.

Men don't bond like that.

Disclaimer: Was unable to watch the video prior to commenting

Edit: Just google "It's Not About the Nail". Easy to find, funny but telling video.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

It's an awesome video. I highly recommend watching it.

The girlfriend solution could work for somethings, but not all. It can work for issues you’re having with family or friends or at work, but you cannot discuss matters related to your husband with a friend. Relationship matters should only be between a husband and wife and never expressed or revealed to someone outside the marriage.

Very good point.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 5 points6 points  (2 children)

That's a good solution. I'll add it. However, many women need to also be able to ramble to their husbands. Eliminating it entirely may be too much to ask for many women, but minimizing is certainly attainable by all.

Thanks mate!

[–]LateralThinker133 Stars 8 points9 points  (1 child)

many women need to also be able to ramble to their husbands.

Sure, to a point. If it's relevant, or interesting, or it contains a problem for him to solve/comment on. But if it's a narration of your day, how you broke a nail, then went for lunch, were disrespected by the cashier at the supermarket, thought you had a flat tire but it's fine and Cindy had this lovely purse when you saw her at... yeah, no. He'll commit suicide.

In fact, in that (hypothetical but all too real) example, he'd probably latch onto the tire issue and ask questions, review the car, maybe maintenance it right then. It's something to focus on, something to do. And then she'd get pissed for him interrupting her, not listening to anything else she says, when he's just looking for a way to engage with her/her issues, not to be talked at.

I know the above contains stereotypes. But stereotypes exist for a reason. I've experienced/done the above more than once IRL, almost verbatim. It happens.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Well done my friend, well done. 👌

[–]widdley 10 points11 points  (1 child)

Good post. Thank you. :)

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You're welcome.

[–]spitfitt 4 points5 points  (1 child)

How do you feel about using female friends as women's main avenue for emotional venting rather expecting boyfriends/husbands to take that role?

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I think that's a great idea whenever possible.

[–]Hammocknapping 12 points13 points  (9 children)

Interesting take on female vs. male communication styles, but not something I’ve personally experienced. My husband and I can talk for hours. We road trip a lot and always laugh when we get to our destination, because 4 hours can seem like 4 minutes when you’re chatting and enjoying each other’s company.

I think your suggestions are a little extreme. They require complete compromise on behalf of the woman. An additional, less extreme suggestion, may simply be to warn your husband when you need to vent. I’ll do this when I encounter a difficult issue at work. I’ll lay out the story, tell him what actions I plan to take and then ask him what he would do differently.

Personally, I think my husband and I don’t experience this due to the fact that we have shared hobbies, experiences and world views that we can discuss, but at the same time we are just different enough that an element of debate can pop into the conversation. That’s why it’s important to know just enough about your husband’s interest to be dangerous. You can ask questions and allow him to explain and talk about his passions and interests.

But, also have to have excellent oral communication skills for our jobs, so maybe conversing and civil debate become easier with practice, or at the very least, allows you to feel confident in your opinions even if they aren’t shared by your partner.

[–]Daramona 9 points10 points  (3 children)

You just answered yourself why it works for both of you:

I’ll lay out the story, tell him what actions I plan to take and then ask him what he would do differently.

Most women won't ask what he would do differently. They expect that he just listen to their story and don't bother them with any type of solution. This will leave most men confused and they feel useless because she didn't even consider to ask for an opinion!

If you take a look at the MBTI you'll see that there is a big conflict between people who are either feeling (F) or thinking (T). So if you are a women which is feeling the world you'll have a hard time to express yourself to a men who is an analysing type of guy.

This will make it difficult to solve problems, especially related to communication, within your relationship, if you don't accept that there is more than one perspective!

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 6 points7 points  (2 children)

Most women won't ask what he would do differently. They expect that he just listen to their story and don't bother them with any type of solution. This will leave most men confused and they feel useless because she didn't even consider to ask for an opinion!

Very well said! 👌

[–]kindlypassive -1 points0 points  (1 child)

Yes agreed. It’s very weird because sometimes I find myself defending myself when my boyfriend tries to disagree or try to correct me when I tell him my story. Idk why but I have this defense mechanism whenever he tries to give me a solution. However the wonderful thing about my boyfriend is that he is aware of his actions and that he’s naturally built to solve problems. It’s still hard for me though :(

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It’s still hard for me though :(

Yes, it's hard for you now, but it's almost guaranteed to get much harder if you don't take this by the horns now - while this issue is small.

Every time you take issue with his interjection into your story, you discourage him from listening altogether. Remember, the reason for the interjection is to help him listen (as explained in the post).

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 4 points5 points  (4 children)

Interesting take on female vs. male communication styles, but not something I’ve personally experienced. My husband and I can talk for hours. We road trip a lot and always laugh when we get to our destination, because 4 hours can seem like 4 minutes when you’re chatting and enjoying each other’s company.

Good point.

Like any generalization, it's generally true with regards to the general population. However, it won't hold true with regards to every last individual and it certainly won't be to the same degree with regards to each person and each conversation.

Additionally, what's described here will hold more true with regards to real conversation and less so with regards to frivolous chit chat. It will hold more true with regards to conversation regarding personal matters and less so with regards to inconsequential things. I'm sure that several more distinctions can be made.

I think your suggestions are a little extreme. They require complete compromise on behalf of the woman.

In every aspect of life, the one with the greater need must be the one to yield to make it work for both. Sex is a good example where the genders are reversed. The male desire and drive for sex is much more powerful than the female one. That's why it's the man who must yield in order to make it enjoyable for both. It's possible to do this without forgoing the male need for sex. Likewise with regards to conversation as is explained in the post.

An additional, less extreme suggestion, may simply be to warn your husband when you need to vent.

I think I did make that suggestion. I definitely meant to. I'll go back and read it again and if it's missing, I'll add it in.

[–]Hammocknapping -1 points0 points  (0 children)

Like any generalization, it [may be] generally true with regards to the general population. However, it won't hold true with regards to every last individual and it certainly won't be to the same degree with regards to each person and each conversation.

I would recommend adding this as a disclaimer to all of your posts.

Additionally, what's described here will hold more true with regards to real conversation and less so with regards to frivolous chit chat. It will hold more true with regards to conversation regarding personal matters and less so with regards to inconsequential things.

For me, chatting and conversing are synonyms. I don’t speak to my husband formally, because I believe that side of myself should be left for work. Instead, our conversations, even when we debate, are informal and full of playful banter. We use the same approach for serious discussions, because preparing for and having a serious discussion with your romantic partner should never resemble a boardroom presentation.

In every aspect of life, the one with the greater need must be the one to yield to make it work for both.

In my relationship, we both make efforts to compromise. Each person gives a little, and we are both rewarded with a lot of love and goodwill. When both partners are working towards a common goal, if only one partner makes a sacrifice, then there’s little buy in or room for mutual respect. When partners meet somewhere in the middle, then the partnership is strengthened by the shared experience of solving problems jointly.

[–]makingballoons -1 points0 points  (2 children)

I just think it’s a little ridiculous to expect women to be okay with having their husbands cut a conversation short while she’s still talking especially mid sentence. That seems very rude. If, as you say, that the person with the higher need for something should yield for the other, would it then be okay to tell husbands that they should be okay with their wives cutting sex in the middle and that the man should just not take it personally?

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

False equivalency. Let's compare apples to apples.

Say you suddenly feel a shooting pain in middle of sex or if you suddenly can't breathe, do you think he should stop even though it's cut short for him right when he needs it most?

Likewise, while you're talking and talking, he might feel the equivalent of feeling suffocated. He can plow through and let you carry on but if he does that, he'll be incapable of actually listening to you.

Sure, it's wise to take whatever steps necessary to try and avoid such situations. However, this isn't always possible.

[–]makingballoons 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I don’t think a woman has to literarily feel physical pain in the middle of sex for the man to stop. If she feels very uncomfortable, can mentally no longer participate and has feelings of suffocation (just like a man in a prolonged conversation), she should ask him to stop and the husband needs to respect that. She would obviously do the same if he was feeling suffocated in a conversation.

No idea how that’s a false equivalency.

[–]PeacefullyOffline 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Thank you for this. Maybe this will help me get this guy I'm interested in.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You're welcome

[–][deleted]  (13 children)

[removed]

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (12 children)

For women, there isn't always a specific reason the conversation is occurring in the first place. I believe /u/loneliness-inc covers this in the post. You are trying to complain that women don't converse the same way that men do which is the entire point of the post.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 2 points3 points  (5 children)

Thank you!

Yes, I did cover that in the post.

OTOH, the wife has emotional needs and part of these needs is for her to speak her mind to those who are close with her. Long conversation helps her bond with her husband and can even relieve her stress (often transferring it to him). If she can't converse with her husband, the marriage will be dry and dull for her.

[–][deleted]  (4 children)

[removed]

    [–]pearlsandstilettosModerator | Pearl[M] 1 point2 points  (3 children)

    Do not be snarky.

    [–][deleted]  (2 children)

    [removed]

      [–]pearlsandstilettosModerator | Pearl[M] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

      Snark:

      Perhaps read my comment?

      and

      Adventures in missing the point...

      Reminder:

      The men who can provide the most valuable advice are: older, married and long time participants in the RP community. Everyone else should focus his time on TRP.

      In addition to the comments made by u/girlwithabike and u/loneliness-inc, your comment was reported as being unclear or poorly written. Upon review of your conversation I saw snark and warned you not to do that.

      [–][deleted]  (4 children)

      [removed]

        [–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor 1 point2 points  (3 children)

        The post was written by a man and it was written more clearly than your response. Your comment came across as whining not elucidation. And I did not downvote you but go ahead and throw accusations about your internet points.

        [–]the_strat -1 points0 points  (2 children)

        You still haven't said anything about what I actually wrote. You wanted to read it as though I was being whiny as though you could actually hear inflection across text. Seriously try reading it again without assigning emotion to it. You are exemplifying the point made in my comment as well as the one made in the post. I'm sharing information that would be helpful to this community if you could just read it without assumptions to my intentions.

        [–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

        Oh man... I leave for a few hours and you get all triggered.

        When I read your original comment, my initial reaction was - this guy is incoherent and he didn't read the post. Whether that's true or not, that was my initial reaction. Because I had this reaction, I decided not to respond because I couldn't think of a useful response that wasn't sparky. So I left it for others to respond to and u/girlwithabike did just that. My response was confirming what she said and had nothing to do with your comment because your comment seemed incoherent.

        I see some of your comments were removed and it seems you had a spat with a mod over this. I'm still not sure what the whole commotion is over because I didn't fully get your comment to begin with.

        In other words - my lack of response to you was because I had nothing useful to say to you. It wasn't a stance either way. Now that I saw the whole back and forth that resulted, I'm left scratching my head as to why you got so triggered.