I was recently walking around an expo at Grand Palais with two gay guyfriends, rambling on about some man-related internal debate I was having in my head, when one of them turned to me and said: “If you would just shut up and [BLEEP], you could be married to a billionaire in a month”. (The [BLEEP] part was a bit more NSFW, so use your imagination.)
His words were harsh, but they spoke the truth. You see, us women are wonderful creatures. We are beautiful and smart and communicative and caring and overall rather brilliant, with the exception one major flaw: most of us have absolutely no clue when to shut up. It appears that we all have conspicuous need to overanalyze and over-think, blurting out all the accompanying thoughts and feelings in the heat of the moment, which often triggers a natural male defence reflex to run for the hills. (Why do you think I’ve been living in France for so long? They don’t only understand 50% of what I’m saying, which technically, ups my chances at success.)
While we have all learned the Triple Thought Filtration System from La Yummy Mummy that teaches us exactly how to control our emotions, today I offer you a more thorough guideline on when you need to do it. Listen up, this is useful stuff!
When is it best to shut up?
1. When you’re not sure exactly what you want, from him or from life. Which, in girl world, applies roughly to 75% percent of the time. Let’s face it, our brains are confusing little roadmap where all the signs have been flipped sideways, giving no clear indication on the best way to proceed. While we have learned to maneuver through them via expertise and intuition, it still confuses the sh*t out of men. No matter how much they try, they will never understand the secret female Morse Code in which “yes” means “maybe” and “maybe” means “no” and a sullen, teary-eyed stare means “give me a hug”. How many times have you heard a man explosively yell “What exactly do you WANT?!” Also, how many times have you heard about men dating older women because they “know what they want”? Well, try to figure that out in advance and tell him directly. I know it’s a challenge, but I believe in you!
2. Right before you’re about have sex. I learned this the hard way, and by hard way, I mean the Jam Jam way. I wouldn’t wish the experience on my meanest ex-boss, and that’s saying a lot. I know that, technically, giving a guy blue balls should be somewhat empowering, and keep him lusting for more, yet there is a fine line between teasing and torture that I don’t recommend crossing.
3. When you’re not happy with their “performance”. Trust me, they probably aren’t that happy with it either. Men already have a ton of pressure in that domain, and added commentary don’t help. Unless we are dealing with a repeat offender here, it’s best to ignore it and suggest either food or sleep.
4-6. Speaking of which, let’s move on to the Golden Trio of when it is absolutely imperative to calm your horses and keep your thoughts to yourself.
When he’s tired. Remember, men are simple creatures who work on a problem-solution basis. When they are tired, this simply means that they want to sleep. This is NOT the time to get into a three-year-plan conversation, unless you want there to be no plan at all. Instead… Let. Him. Sleep.
When he’s hungry. Same logic – if he’s hungry, he wants to eat. For extra points that you can use to your advantage later, cook or get him something to eat!
When he’s angry. Combined with one of the two above factors (think “hangry”), and he just wants to chop somebody’s head off. Don’t let that somebody be you.
I realize that this weeds out about 80% of the time you see him, but remember that, when it comes to guys, timing is everything. My own mother is a prime example of this, as she spends DAYS looking for the perfect moment to approach my dad about something, and this is after forty years of being together!
7. When it’s money / success-related. For most men, these two go hand-in-hand, and essentially determine their self-worth. Also, most of them are ridiculously sensitive when it comes to money, whether they have it or they don’t. If they have money, they will forever worry about you using them for it, even if they first met you when their ass was broke and you had to work to jobs to pay the bills. If they don’t have any, they mourn over all of the things they cannot give you, which is another level of hell that I don’t even get into. In any case, tread lightly on the topic, and MAKE YOUR OWN MONEY.
8. When they’re busy. If the female brain is twisting, winding road, then the male brain is a tunnel – long and narrow. Guys have absolutely zero multitasking potential, and shouldn’t be bothered when they are “in the middle of something”, especially if that something is work. They will either get mad or ignore you. Either way, you lose.
9. When you’ve said it already, hundreds of times. Which means that you know exactly how the scenario is going to pan out. Instead of repeating the same thing over and over like a broken record, try to think of an alternative way to get the message across, or, if you’re really smart, try to make them come to the realization themselves. The latter one is challenging, ideas are welcome!
10. When you’re out in public. This is, perhaps, the one most important rule to live by. Never pick on your guy front of other people. For one, it will make you look bad. Second, he will resent you forever. Yes, I realize that its painful to listen to the same dumb jokes for the millionth time, and yet rolling your eyes and making snide comments will do nothing, except make other people around you uncomfortable. If it bothers you too much, break up with him, because guess what? Personalities don’t change!
I would like to thank my own mother and La Yummy Mummy for all this wisdom. Without the examples of these two women, I would never be talking.