This is a public service announcement to my fellow men currently in a relationship with a woman and you don’t know if she actually wants you to respond when she has a “conversation” with you or she wants you to sit silently with your mouth shut.
I’ve been married for 12 years and, honestly, have just figured it out. Based on all the “talks” my wife and I have had plus what I’ve observed from closely watching the women in my life (grandmothers, mother, mother in-law, sister-in-laws, aunts, cousins, and female friends), here’s what I’ve discovered:
Respond When Her…
- Pace is slower than normal – It’s important to “baseline” her and know her normal voice cadence, first.
- Voice inflection is downward – Usually, downward inflection makes her sound monotone and serious.
- Sentences don’t contain any profanity – Of course, balance this against her “normal” use of cursing (if it’s average or lower than average, good sign to respond).
- Body language is controlled – Think smooth, graceful, and deliberate like Clair Huxtable.
- Eyes are laser focused on you – You should feel like she’s projecting a sniper’s red beam onto your face.
Translation (when she exhibits most or all of the above): I want you to listen to what I’m saying and think carefully before opening your mouth but you better say something and that something needs to be good.
DON’T Respond When Her…
- Pace is a rapid fire delivery – She sounds like a machine gun.
- Pauses between statements are lengthy – The silence will feel awkward but whatever you do, don’t say a word.
- Voice inflection is upward – When you hear upward inflections it sounds like she is asking you a question…but she ain’t. Once again, don’t say a word.
- Sentences are filled with more profanity than a sailor – I’ve also noticed firsthand that the profanity is used so forcefully that you can feel a faint spray of saliva on your face. If this happens fellas, don’t wipe it away (trust me, don’t wipe).
- Body movements periodically are wild – Think of the twitch of a drug addict.
- Eyes are fidgety – Think of a mentally unstable person.
Translation (when she exhibits most or all of the above): I want you to hear me, nod occasionally, but don’t say a damn word or I’m going to blow up worse than I already am.
Practice (and execute) on all the above and you’ll not only have a better relationship with the woman in your life, you’ll live longer too!