I had read many times that men and women are different – physically and mentally. Sometimes my analytical side kicks in and I wonder how mentally different can we really be? We are all human! We all have problems to solve…that maybe we should mentally be categorized by personality types and not gender.
Well, I was leaning towards that conclusion until something happened last week…
Andrew, my boyfriend, and I wanted to visit with his Mom and her boyfriend (Bob the real estate agent) to discuss the best method of selling Andrew’s house. Saturday night, we were planning on driving up to the city where his Mom and Bob live.
Little more info: All three of us (Andrew, his Mom and I) live in different cities. Andrew lives the farthest away and it was his weekend to come to my house.
Andrew called me the Thursday before and said he had mentioned to his Mom that maybe it would be a better idea for them to come to MY HOUSE for dinner – but that he would have to check with me first.
I stood there, blinking with a handful of tissue as I was just getting over a cold, wondering if I had just heard him correctly.
I told him I was just not up to entertaining – plus my house was a mess – but how could I say NO as he had already told his Mom the idea?
He said it was no big deal…that he would tell his Mom that we would come up Saturday to her house.
I told him that she would probably be insulted and feel like she was not welcome in my house. It would be different if we could tell her we had other plans but obviously that would be a lie as we are going to her house instead.
I felt like I was put in an awkward situation where I had to say yes. I couldn’t risk offending his Mom as she could be a part of my life for a long time to come.
We got into an argument because he said it was no big deal to tell his Mom no and I told him it was a big deal – if I was in his Mom’s shoes, I would be offended as we have gone to his Mom’s house many times and she had never been to my house.
Then Andrew announces, “Then it must be A GIRL THING! Would it have been better if I just told them to come over and didn’t check with you?”
You can imagine my response. I realized we were wasting our time trying to figure out who was right and who was wrong so I told him that we had to figure out what we are going to do.
It was not worth possibly offending his Mom so we decided to have them over for dinner. We would get a frozen lasagna and garlic bread – and I would clean like a crazy woman.
Side note: They came over that Saturday evening and we had a great time. Andrew does have a great family and I am thankful for that – but that was not the issue.
The following morning, Andrew and I got into a repeat discussion about how the situation even came about. I tried again to explain that his Mom would know that I had said no as Andrew was all for them coming to my house – and that put me in an awkward situation.
I asked him not to volunteer me for things regarding his family unless he ASKS ME FIRST – or we would be having this discussion again.
We finally agreed to disagree. Andrew is convinced that it must be a girl/guy difference as he still doesn’t understand my point. He believes I could have said no and no one would have been offended.
This made me turn to my female friends and co-workers. I told them the situation and they all agreed with me…that his Mom would have been offended had I said no – but maybe I influenced them as I was the one asking the question.
Difference between men and women?
This makes me wonder…Would it have been different if we were inviting his Dad over? Is it a guy/girl difference? Does it take more to offend a male? I would love to hear readers comments as the jury is still out on this issue for me…What would you have done if you were in this situation?
for me it would be pretty straight forward and I personally wouldn’t read too much into it. I would just have figured that the plans had changed or something came up and it was all good.
Guys are logical
Women are emotional
it’s that simple
unless you’re a woman who would then read a whole bunch into why I thought it was so straight forward and what I really meant by that. I must be judging, or secretly thinking something else.
Ooooooooooooooh, I can SO relate! Thanks for the early morning chuckle.
My husband doesn’t get how the house has to be clean for company. Sometimes we are just plain..slobs. Not that we live in filth or anything but sometimes our home is unorganized chaos. I have a saying, “A clean house is a sign of a wasted life”. Meaning, that sometimes the time we spend cleaning could be sometimes spent better elsewhere. Maybe someone else’s home. 🙂 I remember when we first moved into our ‘first place’. I would spin around like a whirling dervish before the company came and get into a frenzy making sure the toilet had the bubbly blue stuff, the rugs were freshly manicured and everything was oh so fresh. Right now I might have to consider getting a house keeper to keep it under control.
For me unexpected company is a no no no matter who you are! My home time is so precious to me that I’ve almost become a hermit. You see, I am with MANY people everyday and 3/4 of the day so I get peopled out but that’s just me. It’s my haven and our retreat.
If he explained the situation why would she be offended? Seems to me that any reasonable person – especially someone who understands what entertaining involves – would certainly understand that the circumstances weren’t good for you to have them over. It seems to me that in a way you may have removed this possibility in the future by having them over anyway.
Great comments. Looking back I think a couple of things were at play for me…
1. His mom had never been to my house so I wanted to make a good impression. In my mind, Good Impression = Clean House…that might be a girl thing…Clean house = a crap load of work for Michele
2. I have seen first hand with friends how not getting along with in-laws can cause major problems in a marriage. I just didn’t want to take the chance of offending her. I like Andrew’s family and I would like the good relationship I have with them to stay that way.
3. I realized this morning that the situation touched a sore spot for me. My mother constantly volunteers me to do stuff for other people without asking me. I have told my mom to stop doing that but she continues (now I do live far away so it doesn’t happen much any more). I tell her to ask me first but she rarely does. Some people might be thinking just don’t do the thing she volunteered you for…well..example: how do you tell your Grandma no? Especially when you want to help her but you need to teach your mother a lesson?
So when Andrew volunteered my house to entertain, it hit that same spot. So I have realized:
protectiveness of in-law relationship + sore spot = argument
Well, yes, Michele, it is A GIRL THING, but you must not be offended or irritated by that phrase. I agree with Bob men are logical, women are emotional. It doesn’t say women have no logic. They do have, but it is different. Men and women have a different perception of the world around. It’s a well known fact and we can do nothing about that but submit and try to find a mutual agreement. I believe should his Mom get to know about the situation, she would support you too, as she is a woman. On the other hand if you talk to your male co-workers, you will definitely receive ‘what a problem?’ reply. Men do not fuss about these ‘little’ things. The art is to learn your lessons from the situations like that and at least try to look at the situation from HIS point of view. Have you read “Men Are From Mars. Women Are From Venus” by John Gray? Please do. Most couples having read this outstanding book, leave in piece in joy. Wish you the same!