My Boyfriend is Wonderful, but Not Ambitious or Successful

My Boyfriend is Wonderful, but Not Ambitious or Successful

Hi Evan,

I have been struggling with the fact I have a wonderful man in my life who loves me more than I’ve ever felt loved, but I’m just not satisfied somehow. We have known one another for about ten years dating on and off, taking a four year break at one point. He is VERY persistent and continues to take me back into his life if I let him. We are compatible on many levels, but there is one thing that continues to turn me off (from ten years ago to now) and that is his lack of ambition to be successful professionally. I wouldn’t be picky about his career field of choice but at the rate it’s going I’ll never see him in a 6 o’clock loosened tie… which is a huge turn on for me.

I’m very much that young professional go getter with the high stress job, always moving to the next promotion. I’m busy all the time professionally and personally because I thrive on feeling accomplished. He on the other hand is satisfied with bringing home an okay pay check to put food on his table, not that concerned with finishing college (he’s 31) and rarely has anything interesting to talk about outside of “us”, movies, and other media outlet driven conversation. A full day of freedom in my life does not revolve around TV, 90% of his would.

I can’t let go of wishing he were a stronger, more creative, more successful man who I could look to for experienced life advice. I’m very independent but I’d also like to get some reassurance and empathy from a reliable source from time to time. I know that’s harsh. I would never say those things to him, but it’s how I feel. I find the sexiest thing about a man is his intelligence, and no matter if a person is well read or not, a great deal of intelligence comes from professional life experience. Please tell me I’m being too hard on him and myself.  I should be happy to have a man who loves me and I can trust.

Thanks,
CJ

Thank you, CJ, for writing one of the most self-aware letters I’ve run. I think everyone here can feel your pain. Love is only easy when we’re so whipped that we can’t even think clearly. In such circumstances, there are no decisions to be made. But right now, you’re seeing things quite clearly. Which means the world is grey, not black and white.

Love is only easy when we’re so whipped that we can’t even think clearly.

So before I get into talking about him, let’s talk about you.

You’re not a gold-digger for wanting a guy who is more ambitious.
You’re not snobby for finding intelligence sexy.
You’re not shallow for craving conversation that doesn’t revolve around pop culture.
And you’re not wrong for wishing he were stronger, more creative, and more experienced professionally.

The questions that linger for me are these….

1)    Are compatibility and kindness more important than worldliness and ambition?
2)    Is it realistic to think that you can find a worldly, professional man who is as kind and compatible as your current boyfriend?

This is the calculus of dating. And the same answers don’t apply to everyone. Which is why giving advice on such individual matters is somewhere between impossible and pointless.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t try.

Someone told me recently that women expect men to fulfill ALL of their needs, which sets them up for failure. They want men to fulfill the role of their best girlfriend and their rock solid Marlboro Man simultaneously. As I said in “Men Don’t Go Both Ways” chapter of “Why You’re Still Single”, these are different men and you’ll always be disappointed if you expect a man to cover all bases. Strangely, this is one area in which I think men “get it” more. We can compartmentalize. Which is why we’d rather watch football with only the guys, while you’d like us to come shoe shopping with you.

Point is, it’s a failing proposition to expect one man to be all things to you. Thus, you have to make hard choices. What’s most important to you? And what things can you NOT get from anyone BUT your boyfriend?

I’ve wrestled with that myself, because, like you, I get a rise out of ambition, philosophy, and creativity. Who doesn’t? But I can talk to my business coach about my business, I can talk to my best guy friend about philosophy, and I can experience my own creativity and others’ creativity in 1000 other forms. But I can’t make love to my business coach. I can’t wake up next to my best guy friend. And with all the art and culture out in the world, I don’t need my spouse to be a creator as much as an appreciator.

I get the joy of sophistication. It’s fun to feel like the witty, urbane couple that can break bread with the prime minister if need be. Just know that apart from the spark you feel around a sophisticate, it doesn’t have much inherent value. The ability to quote Proust pales in comparison with the person who will drive you to your chemo treatments in thirty years.

The ability to quote Proust pales in comparison with the person who will drive you to your chemo treatments in thirty years.

So, back to the original question: are compatibility and kindness more important than worldliness and ambition? Well, if it were either kindness OR worldliness, I’d say yes. But there are ambitious people who are kind as well. And it would be easy to tell you to dump your guy and seek one of these guys out. The thing is that most good qualities often come with bad qualities as well. The ambitious guy may work 70 hours a week. The sophisticated guy may be a know-it-all and a snob. You just don’t know until you put yourself out there. There’s a pretty big risk in doing so.

I would encourage you to look long and hard at what really matters, CJ, and how hard it is to find it. For years, I said that I wasn’t jealous of any of my married friends because it’s not like they married MY wife. And I meant it – I never really met anyone with whom I was super-compatible. But now that I have someone with whom I’m super-compatible, my mind succumbs to the temptation – what if there’s someone else? Someone younger. Someone more accomplished. Someone more well-read.

Is there someone like that out there? Maybe. But she wouldn’t have the number one quality that my girlfriend has: she accepts me as I am, and loves me unconditionally. No other girlfriend I’ve ever had has done that. Which is why I’m keeping her and never letting her go.

I can’t say what’s right for you, my friend. Intellectual stimulation matters. Money definitely matters. But if you can get stimulation from other people and you can make money yourself, why not land the one thing you can’t get anywhere else – a partner for life?

89
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Comments:

  1. 91
    Hadley Paige

    Naturegirl @ 89 writes to Vino: “. . . why are you commenting so much on a dating website if you are so anti-marriage?”

    Answer>> its a dating site not a marriage site.

    For me, as an example, dating is cool (under certain circumstances), but as for marriage, it doesn’t hold an attraction for me as I curently understand it’s benefits and liabilities to me. Is it OK for me to comment here?

  2. 92
    vino

    I wonder if Hadley & I are related….

    Kudos to A-L for a good faith try to see the other side of the coin.

    “I’m also very curious to know about your history. Have you been married? Divorced? How old are you? Any kids?”

    You’ll forgive me my perogative to keep my private information private. Calling me a sexist isn’t the sweetest inducement to divulging anything, for I know what is to follow if I actually divulge.

    Trying to bring it back to CJ & the real matters. Dating/marriage is problematic when there is an income disparity. This is gender-neutral.

    What’s problematic as I see it is how each sex views money in the dating/marriage arena. If you read the posts of this thread and others, it seems women on the whole believe it perfectly alright to seek and demand that their prospective mates earn more than, and certainly no less than what they make.

    The fireworks began when I suggested that men apply the same financial standards to women they date. No coincidence there. Does that make me a sexist? Don’t think so. I’m simply applying what’s already done the other way.

    It’s been my experience you know someone knows a rule or behavior is wrong/improper/unfair when they refuse to have that same rule or behavior applied to themselves…

    “You can also buy NSA sex.”

    – It’s called dating to some, or to many. Particularly when he’s supposed to pay for everything ;-)

    Smile, it’s Friday!

  3. 93
    Sarah G

    I’m with cinnamon and Eda. I’m relatively new to this board, so I don’t know how old the conversation is, and I don’t appreciate the punitive tone in the suggestions that I should be up on the history of the wars fought on this blog before I even got here. But more to the point, I’m not finding it very helpful in my own dating life, and the comments that seem intended to provoke a gender war do bring out the provoked in me, which is not a good thing for anyone. So for my better mental health I too am bidding adieu.

    All the best!

  4. 94
    Shelley

    I second Evan’s comment. This blog is an interesting one, but it is being diluted by the constant arguing. I look to the posts for something that I can actually use, something to help in a quest to meet the right person. Instead I find all these personal fights.

    This is not against any of the individuals involved – they all seem very intelligent and informed. Their comments might be better on another blog. This blog is supposed to be to help people meet someone with practical tips.

    Instead, it is a whole lot of arguing between a few people that won’t help anybody with their dating life. Most of the comments seems to be inspired by a desire to prove that 98% of women suck, and trying to warn men away from women. So what ends up happening is that this blog becomes a place where men are warned not to have relationships.

    Now, I do understand that a lot of this is because the people involved had bitter past experiences, and I respect that. I love to unload my bitter grievances as well. However, that is for your counsellor or your own private blog. This blog is not a place to get it off your chest. This is supposed to help people. Where the tips for finding the right person?

    After reading some of these posts I think one would feel like simply giving up. So is that what it really is then? Are only 2% of women good looking enough or nice enough, so only a few of us will ever have a decent relationship? Are the rest of us just deluding ourselves? If I read this blog long enough I am going to get depressed.

  5. 95
    Michele

    EMK # 82

    Hello Evan,

    I have read (with interest) posts written by Eda. She’s a sensitive thinker. And given the choice (between the two) Mr. vino would be thrown to the curb in a short heartbeat (in my opinion).

    ******************************

    EMK # 90

    Have not visited this blog in a while for the very reasons that you mention, Evan. In fact am getting proficient at rapidly scrolling past “many” entries.

    My purpose for subscribing to this blog is for fitting, applicable, relevant and pertinent online dating info.

    Thanks so much for providing such a wonderful service, Evan!!

  6. 96
    vino

    To quote the estimable Hadley Paige #78:

    “Vino and many other men ask women what benefit there is to men in dating/relationships/marriage bc we love women (in the abstract) and are attracted to them sexually and as companions. We ask bc we would like to hear something that we may have missed. And if we haven’t missed it then, hopefully women will understand (but probably not like) where we are coming from these days.”

    Emphasis on “probably not like . . . “

  7. 97
    m

    “Sorry, Sarah. I don’t get your logic. If you can earn everything a man can, the same FINANCIAL standards should necessarily apply. Please expand, if you would, on how biology should mandate such a financial double standard and disparity.”

    Vino, you’re usually the one nattering on about what biology requires and dictates and mandates. Why the about-face all of a sudden?

    P.S. Women still, on national average, make 60-80% of what a man makes. The ERA never passed. Look it up, if lightning strikes six times in the same place and you feel so inclined.

  8. 98
    m

    Evan, I’m observing something … interesting.

    vino is like the new verbosity.

    Lots of people here, who are by their own admission coming to the site for tips on how to make their relationships work, seem to have similar concerns re: his anti-relationship attitude.

    Yet it’s the rest of us who are admonished to pipe down??

    Now you are already the man. I know controversy is good for page hits and all but … ???

  9. 99
    Evan Marc Katz

    M,

    I don’t attempt to foster controversy. I:

    a) answer reader questions as best I can and…
    b) try to keep the dialogue on the boards from boiling over.

    What you have to understand is that, apart from his catty snipe at Eda and the IMMENSE amount of space he takes up, Vino has done nothing wrong. His opinions are valid; just not to the majority of my readers. That doesn’t mean I should BAN him, does it? That doesn’t mean I should suppress his opinion because it’s unpopular, does it?

    Some people like to stir the pot and get a reaction. Vino, like Verbosity and Deathslayer before him, does just that. But, to his credit, he does it with a minimum of vitriol. In fact, on the whole, he receives a lot more personal attacks than he issues.

    Thus, my recommendation to anyone who doesn’t like something she reads on these message boards is this: feel free skip any post from a poster who bothers you, as opposed to shouting down the poster itself. It’s sort of like the Focus on the Family people writing angry letters to ABC about “Ellen” being on the air, rather than flipping the channel.

    I very much value your readership and hope that you can continue to enjoy the weekly articles instead of getting dragged down by random posts that offend your sensibilities.

    Hope that’s a reasonable compromise.

    Much love,

    Evan

  10. 100
    m

    Being attractive in the dating world ain’t cheap for women.

    – Why is that a guy’s problem?

    It’s not exactly a guy’s “problem”, per se.

    But if you don’t recognize why and when guy’s attitudes — excoriating women whom they believe are ugly, overweight, badly dressed, otherwise “unattractive” — contribute to the excesses of time, energy, and money women spend to prevent men from beating the crap out of them psychically on that issue, then you’re just arguing to be argumentative.

    Which is what I’m beginning to suspect. Anyone else?

  11. 101
    Eda

    I feel like Michael Corleone in the Godfather III — I try to get out, but they keep pulling me back in!

    In the spirit of trying to help men and women understand each, I wanted to share why I have reacted so strongly to certain male posters. Before I do, however, I feel compelled to say that I think there are few women who have tried harder than I have to understand AND appreciate men — I’ve read tons of books, listened to tons of CD’s, watched DVD’s, and have gone to many seminars. I am not a man hater or a man basher. I don’t only look to make women right and men wrong. I try to be balanced and fair, but sometimes it’s hard.

    There are three reasons why I have had such strong negative emotions to the posts written by the Verbosities, Vinos, and Deathslayers of the site — emotions that were so strong that it felt like my heart was being crushed as I read their words. I am going to preface this by also stating that the feelings may not seem rationale, but they are what I was feeling nonetheless.

    1. Their words crushed the very fragile hope that I was trying to nurture by visiting this site and they made me feel hopeless. They made me feel hopeless that I could find a man with whom I could have a fulfilling relationship because men just don’t need/want women. In the difficult dating world, when hope is often all you have, if you feel that someone is taking that away from you, it makes you angry and you just want to lash out. Rather than Deathslayers, to me they were Hopeslayers.

    2. While it has been remarked many times that these guys never made it personal, that’s not how I see it. It is true that they never explicitly said “Eda, you are a golddigger. Cinn, you are a golddigger. Sarah G, you are a prosititute. ” No, they never said that, but they often said that the majority — no the overwhelming majority of women are golddigging prostitutes — because they only want men for money and men pay to be with them and pay for sex. So, if they are basically describing my whole gender that way, they really are insulting me too. And, just in case guys didn’t realize it, no woman wants to be called a prostitute…ever. So, can you see why if someone is insulting you to your core, it’s kind of difficult to really hear what they are saying even if they are making valid and fair comments. Let me give you an analogy that I think will bring it home. As I have indicated in other posts, I am an African American woman. So, for me, it would be like a white person visiting an empowerment forum for African Americans everyday and writing comments and sharing statistics. Within most of those posts, the person often describes African Americans as the “n” word and as inferior human beings. He does make observations that are accurate and he sites stats that are true, but he is very derogatory toward them, and he wonders why they can’t engage with him in a civilized manner. I know that some people may want to cringe from the example, but it’s really how I feel. You could argue — just as it’s been argued here — that he is just sharing his truth and how he feels. While that may be true, it doesn’t diminish the fact that his belief of something so negative about a whole group of people and constantly describing them in such a negative manner is simply going to make that group of people angry…very angry.

    3. This last reason is closely related to reason number two. Because I feel (my feelings could be inaccurate, but that’s what I feel) that these guys don’t like women given their negative views, it is really hard for me to hear them because I feel that the dialogue that they want to engage in will only be to prove just how much women and relationships suck. It doesn’t feel like there is a real desire to see the world from a woman’s perspective. I, selfishly, want their goal to be help me understand women. Instead it feels like their goal is let me expose women as the greedy, selfish, hypocritical prostitutes that they are. It’s just not easy to engage with someone whom you believe has that attitude.

    So, I hope it’s now clear why some of my responses were too personal. I overacted and lashed out because I was hurt. From now on, however, I vow to rise above my feelings and remain civil and respectful. In other words, I’ll just man up and walk it off!

  12. 102
    Evan Marc Katz

    Great post, my dear Eda. Very glad to have you back.

    Although I must make it clear – while a majority of the blog’s readers are women – this isn’t a woman empowerment blog. It just so happens that women are more curious about dating advice and understanding the opposite sex, which is why the fairer sex asks 4 out of 5 questions on here.

    Essentially, my readership has defined the blog more than I have. I’m thrilled to be a small part of your life and hope you continue to get value out of the universal questions asked here.

    As for you, Eda, your wisdom is immense, and it shows.

    EMK

  13. 103
    A-L

    Eda, glad to have you back.

  14. 104
    cinnamon

    Eda,
    Great post! I fully understand your feelings.
    While I don’t share the anger, it was exactly the sense of hopelessness that drove me away from this blog. I really tried to make all these mental exercises and see how possibly I could accommodate the various needs that guys here express. However, no matter how much I stretch myself, when I combine posts from different threads, I find the requirements so contradictory that I see no realistic chance of ever been good enough.
    Basically, whatever I choose to do will be wrong. And whatever intention behind this choice, it must be a bad intention. That’s my impression

    Vino,
    I really do enjoy your posts. I think it’s great to read here what guys think even if some perceive it as unnecessary splitting ones guts. I also do realize that if one wants to engage in a meaningful discussion on a blog like this there are only two options, either you make it more or less general, or you make it very personal. And not everyone is comfortable with the latter one. But I just think you cannot turn your back to someone and at the same time ask them to have a dialog with you and understand you.
    As Evan said, women appear to be generally more curious about dating advice and understanding the opposite sex. I think it’s simply great that you and other guys actually make the effort of reading this blog, commenting on it and engaging yourself so much in the discussions, because in my eyes this means that in reality you do care about relationships :-)

  15. 105
    vino

    Good to have Eda back. I really do mean that. Eda writes wonderfully on the subject of hope. This common theme is one that I (perhaps DS & verbosity also) share. However, I view it differently.

    Let me explain. I can’t speak for any other guys, but I think that to say “I hope…” in this context there needs to be a reasonably good chance of success. Otherwise I think one is being delusional. I hope to win the lottery, but how likely is that really to occur?

    I don’t wish to sound hopeless either. I think it’s important to keep in mind that the issues we all discuss often times means the ‘goal’ or ‘ideal’ is necessarily the minority of cases (Ex – vast majority of women goldiggers). That means the majority of women I meet have money as maybe the primary goal of a relationship. I just need to act accordingly & adjust expectations accordingly. Patience. If, for example, Eda meets a great guy who’s concerned about the money issue, she has essentially 2 choices – be patient & prove him wrong or move on for someone less ‘jaded.’

    I’d like not to parse or critique Eda’s comments. But I would like to offer a different take on her paragraph 2 from my perspective – I cannot help the outrage she feels at some assertions. She’s entitled to feel however she wishes. I cannot help she doesn’t like the inferences and the conclusions. That doesn’t make them any less true. That most women want money for their companionship (and more?) may necessiate the reasonable conclusions that most are, in some way, shape or form, a ‘prostitute.’ That certainly does not mean all, and I take pains to point that out. I cannot help that she personalizes the issues so.

    I would like to say that I as a guy do not dislike all women. given my ‘negative’ views. I do like women. I don’t like want many many women DO. One could easily argue that many women on this blog shouldn’t post here because their views of men are so negative (commitphobes, no ambition, etc…). That’s what essentially several posters have said about me. That’s not very helpful in reverse, is it?

    Gotta run. Work calls.

  16. 106
    Aaraaf

    Thank you Evan,

    I’ve been thinking about this topic a lot and I am glad that other women go through the same issues as I do. The pressure from my parents to find someone more “successful” and “is going somewhere in life” has really started to crack down on me. I love my boyfriend for who he is; granted he’s not a rich man, nor the most handsome, but he does love me for all that I am.

  17. 107
    Selena

    Thanks for posting that Eda. I feel the same way and stopped reading this blog regularly because of it. Got tired of all the scrolling involved to get past the enormous ‘He man woman hater’s club’ posts.

    Wasn’t it Maslow who wrote in effect, “When the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail”? No matter what the topic is, there are some posters here who have one viewpoint they feel compelled to hammer home, at great length, repeatedly on every single thread. I’m sick of it – as apparently are several other formerly loyal readers.

    Glad I stopped in today though Eda to read your very heartfelt response. You so eloquently put into words thoughts I share. Thank you.

    Selena

  18. 108
    Eda

    Thank you all for welcoming me back. It feels great to be appreciated by such smart and caring people!

  19. 109
    Michele

    Eda.

    See my post #95…..knew you were a sensitive thinker. Now I know that you are clearly a higher level thinker with a LOT of heart…..a Michael Corleone, NOT :-)

    I have moments periodically wondering if Mr. Right will enter my World and that said, all I can do is maintain and it’s all good. Has certainly given me the time to realize who I am (once again) and can easily weed out those who don’t quite fit my standards.

    Looking forward to reading more posts from you!!

  20. 110
    hunter

    …There is a silence amongs us blogsters, could it be that the power of the pen has silenced us?

  21. 111
    A-L

    Yes, Hunter, the power of the pen had dampened our writing ardor. I, for one, do not want a debate to continue that is making people feel hurt, depressed, and wanting to leave this blog. Evan’s also made his own sentiments known, and in case you haven’t noticed, as the comments between posters have become more fractious, he’s been posting less. Though I have participated fully in the gender power issues discussion (war?), I find the posts and comments related to dating more valuable for my own life. So, though there is still a comment or two (or three) that I would love to make in regards to some of the posts, in the interest of the future of the board and its commenters, I’m going to refrain, until it’s back to a dating-related subject that’s not the power inequity between a man and a woman.

  22. 112
    Evan Marc Katz

    To clarify one thing:

    The frequency of my posts has NOTHING to do with the comments. I have scaled back to one post a week ONLY because I’m busy creating teleseminars, group coaching courses, and CD’s to reach everyone who can’t pay for one-on-one time with a dating coach.

    I agree that the he said/she said dialogue can get a bit tedious; but I also believe in the community’s ability to largely police itself.

    Keep checking in a few times a week, comment on what you like, ignore what you don’t, and thanks for always coming back for more!

    EMK

  23. 113
    Li-Ann

    Eda, what you wrote was beautiful. I was thinking of posting before I knew you had written that. The whole subject made me upset, and I thought about it a lot and what I could write. Then it came to me – what is the point? The whole thing is futile – relationships, etc. You get an even greater sense of the difficulties for women when you read that stuff. Evan wrote that we could skip the posts that “offend our sensibilities”, but the problem was that the original questions and posts gets hi-jacked, and many of the follow up posts are responses to the negative posts. It would be easy enough to skip the posts on one or two user names, but you still have to read through them all to see if they are simply reactions to the poster(s) in question.

    Eda, then I read your beautiful post and felt you had covered it all. You said everything that needed to be said. There was really nothing I could add. Thanks for standing up for us.

  24. 114
    hunter

    …hmmmhh…

  25. 115
    cinnamon

    vino, you still there?

  26. 116
    vino

    Cinn,

    I’ve been out of town for a couple of weeks, and just got back. Truth be told, I don’t know how much more I’ll read and/or post. Evan’s right in many respects. Obviously many more women read & post than men. Many more attack me than I ever have to them. The usual 2 tactics are:

    1. “WHY are you here?’ – implying that I shouldn’t interrupt/disturb this wonderful ladies’ empowerment place. (sarcasm)

    2. Called ‘sexist’ ‘woman hater’ or variant thereof.

    All this (often, I might add) for challenging assumptions and expectations. Nothing more. Evan’s great in allowing differing viewpoints. Too bad much of his readership often doesn’t share the same philosophy.

  27. 117
    cinnamon

    vino, good to have you back :-)

  28. 118
    Hadley Paige

    A-L writes @ 111 “Yes, Hunter, the power of the pen had dampened our writing ardor. I, for one, do not want a debate to continue that is making people feel hurt, depressed, and wanting to leave this blog.”

    This I think is the kernel of the difficulties on this blog. It seems that affirming uplifting posts are welcomed by the (mostly women) commenters; but the commenters who offered their perspectives that conflict with the needs/wants/desires/hopes/goals of the same commenters are condemned/scorned/hated. (I will admit that the opinions could have been presented in a less provocative manner)

    It has always been true that people tend to discount facts/viewpoints that do not fit their needs/goals/worldview and emphasis those facts/viewpoints that meet their needs. Being aware of this is helpful to people who are in search of the “truth”– But not all of us are. Some know this, but most don’t to some degree.

    I guess what it comes down to, from my persective, is that most of the women commenters would prefer comments from men that make them feel good, give them hope, affirm their viewpoints, affirm their life choices. example >>”Honey, just keep doing what you are doing and eventually you will meet the man of your dreams. I did and now I am so happy I didn’t change myself at all but was just true to myself and now I am so glad I did”.
    Yes, that may have happened, But as Vino has so often commented “what is more likely”.

    I have posted here my frank viewpoints in the hope that the women would benefit from hearing what some/many/most men actually think about the gender wars (among other things). Note: you can’t get away from this by wishing it away–it colors and creats the context for every man/woman interaction (esp if the woman is older).

    After reading many of the negative reactions and observing the form of the reaction (largely shooting the messenger), I must conclude that when (seemingly) most women on these postings ask why, what they really want affirmation.

    As Col. Nathan Jessup said in the film “A Few Good Men” said. “You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth!”

  29. 119
    vino

    Good post, HP. You know, I swear that my last post had another sentence on at the end. Now I don’t see it. Mind tricks?

  30. 120
    m

    (I will admit that the opinions could have been presented in a less provocative manner)

    I think this is a very important point. I’d hate to see it buried in a dense post like the long one above.

    I’ve had this discussion with a lot of gentlemen elsewhere than here when attempting to insist that context matters. I’m usually roundly dismissed because, due in some part to neurological differences, men communicate verbally with less nuance than women and therefore don’t understand why we’re hurt when they’re blunt and rude — because it doesn’t bother them when they communicate amongst themselves.

    Take a cue from Evan, guys. It’s not that we’re all just fainting flowers who can’t handle disagreement. (We do disagree amongst ourselves; you just don’t notice.)

    Of course, if it’s more important to you (universal male you) to be provocative and pump up your egos by blurting things out for shock value, as opposed to actually communicating with others, please feel free to disregard what’s below, but …

    It’s not necessarily WHAT you say. Sometimes it’s HOW you say it.

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