When you enter into a relationship with the opposite sex, it’s usually a magical time! Grinning from ear to ear, you can’t keep your hands off of each other, and want to spend as much time as possible with the other person because you think they are just the most amazing person on the planet!!
You try to stay on your best behavior and be as agreeable as possible because you want that person to enjoy every minute they spend with you. After the newness of the relationship begins to wear off, however, you still enjoy each other’s company (hopefully), and you’re still attracted to them, but you don’t always see eye to eye, and you’re not afraid to voice your opposing opinion. Usually, if you’re both mature adults, you can work through your differences and learn something from each other’s viewpoints, which tends to make your relationship even stronger. Sometimes, though, you just have to agree to disagree if you both want the relationship to work.
My husband and I have been together for over ten years and, to this day, he still tells me that trying to understand some of the things I say is harder than learning to speak Russian. You would think that after 10 years he would be an expert on women’s language, but he just hasn’t caught on…moreover, I’m not sure if he ever will. So I’ve decided to put together a glossary, if you will, of things that women say that men misunderstand. Maybe I’ll print it out for my husband to carry around in his pocket as a quick reference point to help keep him out of hot water. I doubt he’ll read it, though, because, well…that’s just how men are!
1. It’s up to you: Usually, I’ll say this when my husband asks if he should or shouldn’t do something. Should I go out with my friends this weekend? Should I cut the grass? Should I cook dinner for you? I like to think that by giving him the freedom to choose, he will pick the correct option, but that is never the case! What I really mean when I say “It’s up to you” is that it is up to him to decide if he wants to live with me being upset with him for choosing to do something that goes against what I want him to do. No, I don’t want you to go out with your friends this weekend…I want you to spend time with me. Yes, you should cut the grass…and clean the house, take out the garbage, and do all of the laundries. It’s up to you to make the right choice.
2. Do you need to do that now?: When my husband starts tinkering with his power tools in the garage or turns on the video game system, my immediate reaction is to ask if he needs to be doing that. He is oblivious to the dirty dishes in the sink, the piles of laundry in the bedroom, the toys strewn all over the house, and the countless other things on my to-do list that need to be taken care of. He usually looks at me like a lost puppy when I ask him this because he thinks that, yes, he does need to be relaxing and playing with his toys. After a few mean looks and me huffing around the house, he usually gets the idea, but it would be so much easier if he knew what I meant when I ask him this question.
3. I don’t want to talk about it: If something is bothering me, I tend to become very short and standoffish around my husband. He is pretty good at knowing when I’m upset about something but never has a clue as to what I’m upset about. It could be something he said or did last week, and I’m just now realizing that I’m mad about it. He’ll ask me what’s wrong, and I usually respond with “I don’t want to talk about it” because I know that I’m kind of being foolish by bringing up something that I know he doesn’t even remember doing. By this point, though, I can’t let it go and I do want to talk about it…he just has to drag it out of me. That way, when he tells me I’m being ridiculous for bringing up something from last week, I can then remind him that he made me tell him.
4. I’ll eat anywhere: On nights when we don’t feel like cooking dinner, it seems to take us forever to decide on where we should eat. I always say “I’ll eat anywhere” but then strike down every suggestion he throws out. I’m not in the mood for Chinese tonight, or we just had sushi last week, or we had a bad experience with our server three years ago at that restaurant. I guess when I say that I’m open to eating wherever he chooses, I mean that I have somewhere in mind and that he has to play a guessing game as to where I want to eat. Maybe I don’t have any particular place in mind, but he still has to list at least 5 or 6 options before I agree to one. By this point, we could have already cooked dinner at home.
5. Don’t worry about it: We all know that men take a long time to do any household chore that you ask of them. For example, I asked my husband to wash the dishes because I had an extremely long day at work and had to help our daughter with a school project. Call me impatient, but when I ask for something to be done, I want it done right then. After I helped with the project and put our daughter to bed, the dishes were still in the sink. I said to my husband, “Don’t worry about the dishes, I’ll do them” and he thought he was off the hook. What I meant by this was that he should be concerned about a lot more than the dishes at this point.
I could write a book on things women say that men just don’t know how to interpret correctly. I think what it boils down to is that men need to learn how to read women’s minds to understand fully what we mean when we say certain things.