Why is it when a man is asked to do something that they don’t particularly want to do they have absolutely no shame in telling the asker of the unreasonable request ‘Nah mate, I just can’t so it’? If the ‘asker’ of the request also happened to be a male, they feel even less need to elaborate on why they ‘can’t do it’ and the answer is just ‘Nah’. I have listened to my husband just say ‘no’ on many occasions and I must admit while one half of me is cringing at his unwavering honesty, I am always secretly envious of his ability not to get caught up in things he just doesn’t want to do. There’s never any beating around the bush. There’s never a pretend emergency, pregnant dog needing supervision, or apologetic tone promising their kidney in lieu of failed assistance….it is always a straightforward ‘no’.
Women on the other hand, when asked to do something that will be of great inconvenience to us and at times outrageous will feel so backed into a corner that we end up buying a $900 lunch box from a Tupperware party even after swearing blind we wouldn’t be buying anything.
Why is it that women can’t just say ‘no’ to another women without feeling terrible or feeling the need to offer some amazing unearthly excuse? For some reason I think we feel as though honesty would have drastic effects on the friendship, and in all fairness it more than likely would. We know we are sensitive creatures and whilst a ‘nah’ to a male is just a ‘nah’, to a female it a monumental rejection of friendship. We are just a bunch of overthinking, oversensitive sooks.
This is what I would love to say:
No, I’m not coming to meet you tonight I’m going to see if I get a better offer first and then get back to you later if nothing pops up.
No I won’t be meeting you for a drink later, You’ll be drunk and vomiting by then and frankly it will be a monumental waste of make-up and perfume for myself.
No I am not ‘happy’ to go for Tapas because I always leave dinner starving because I have been too polite to be my usual piggish self. I hate that I will still end up having to put in $40 for my ‘alleged meal’ and will end up in the McDonald’s Drive Thru on the way home.
No, I‘d really like to just sit on my couch and I’m not really in the mood for your crap tonight anyway.
Yes I do mind giving you a lift, in fact I am shocked you even asked …You actually live in the complete opposite direction. Are you kidding?
No I don’t want to come for a play. It’s actually more relaxing putting pins in my eyes than it is listening to your child for two hours.
No I really think me putting in $50 for a birthday present for someone I don’t really even speak to is unreasonable.
It’s interesting to note that I would have no problem saying any of this to a really close friend, so maybe the answer is ‘Proximity’ The further removed we are as friends, the less able we are to be completely honest when saying no.
I tried a little bit of this male honesty last week. Even though I still offered a small glimmer of hope, It felt great just saying ‘Look I’ll see what I can do but it doesn’t look good’. I felt like the situation was left ‘open’ and that the other person was waiting for a better excuse, but I was spent, I just couldn’t be bothered.
It was a small step, but at least I’m a little bit closer to that elusive ‘Nah’.
So are you a ‘no’ man or a ‘Yes, of course I’ll buy you coffee again even if it is your turn’ man?