June 23, 2014
June 23, 2014
What Is A Lady?
I found a New York State bulletin dated 1920 amongst my Mother-in-law’s effects that dictated
what a lady’s behavior should be. It read, ”A lady should never say “No””.
My Mother -in-law never said “No”. She said, “Wouldn't you rather?”... “( go to the park, go to the movies, go shopping, buy this instead of what you have picked out?etc., etc.”) You get the idea.
We could spend hours trying to find out what restaurant she wanted to go to or what show she wanted to see, because it was never, “No, I do not like that”. Instead it was, “Wouldn’t you rather etc., etc.” Very exasperating indeed.
So when I read the NYS bulletin as to what constitutes being a Lady, I thought of a scenario such as: A man is trying to rape you and you respond, “Wouldn’t you rather go for a walk? Wouldn’t you rather go to a movie? Wouldn’t you rather have some ice cream? ?” I burst out laughing.
Well times have changed, but women get a subliminal message even today that being forthright in their opinions or ideas bring a man’s wrath or hurt his feelings.
I have had women client's who do not see that they ae creating frustration in their mate and are headed for a divorce because they do not factually express themselves. Other females understand what the woman is conveying, but men’s interpretation is just the opposite of what women mean.
I find that women struggle with being factual. Men sigh with relief when I finally get the wife to just say what she wants clearly and openly . I had one male client say, “Well why didn’t you say that before?” when I was able to convince the spouse that she could speak clearly what she needed.
Men through history have found women indecipherable.
Women think men lack understanding of their feelings and are unsupportive.
It is a communication barrier that I have likened in the past to cats and dogs trying to associate without fighting with each other.
John H. Gray, Ph.D. in his book “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” describes communication differences between men and women. This is a man who understands that we use the same vocabulary, but it has connotations to each gender.
How many modern marriages who are fighting each other for equality have shattered marriages due to the fact that there is gender miscommunication.
Lately I find that when the service people from other countries are employed to handle communications that we have, have the same flaw. I am asked, “Are you out of supplies?” My response, “I said I was out of supplies a month ago“. The foreigner who does not understand the nuances of our language again asks the same question, not once but over and over again, Until I finally realise that the only answer that they can relate to, is the text book response, “Yes I am out of supplies.”
I heard a male in my office say to his wife,” I always fight for you and have always fought for you.” The wife did not hear that he was supportive because he did not say the exact words she wanted to hear. She wanted him to say, “I will fight for you.”
It created such an argument that they refused to listen to any word of counseling and went directly to a lawyer to end the marriage.
What a shame. No counselor can correct issues if the participants non-stop arguing is the same as as they do at home without listening to how they can improve the relationship.