This actually came out of a woman’s mouth once: “If you don’t know what’s wrong, I’m certainly not going to tell you.”
In a more calm moment, we’d hope that the utterer of the phrase might see the absurdity of the comment.
We’re simple. We generally want to make you happy. Tell us what’s wrong when we ask. We’re wired to want to fix things…so we’ll probably try to fix it.
Unless it’s outrageous or silly, in which case you’re on your own.
There is little that makes our blood run as cold as the topic of an X-month anniversary of dating where X is not a multiple of 12. Why?
We’re simple creatures, right?
That means that sometimes, we’re not so perceptive. It’s not because we don’t care, it’s because we’re genetically wired to be hunters, not gatherers. Consequently, we hunt solutions but are often not good at gathering information. Like hints. You may find that you drop them all over the place…and that we don’t get it. This often leads to frustration or disappointment that we haven’t done something, or stopped doing something, or something like that.
Another, probably more effective way to approach the unmet need might be to ask directly. Typically, we want to keep you as happy as we can (within reason — you’ll have to watch a Meg Ryan chic flic with your friends, not us)…so we’ll usually try to accommodate. Even if we won’t, or can’t, you’ll at least know that you have an answer.
What is it about a cookie that paralyzes me? As if eating a single cookie will put another 3 pounds on my hips. I stare at the cookie, thinking to myself… “Don’t do it, you don’t need it.”
“Okay, I will take a bite, but I will only eat half of the cookie.” I am afraid if I start eating the cookie, I won’t be able to stop. Then it will be 2 cookies, 3 cookies, a slice of pizza, then the whole pizza…and I won’t just stop with the cookie, I will then eat the right arm of the person next to me because I will find myself unable to stop.
The more I try to control myself, the more the cookie controls me, my thoughts, my ability to concentrate on anything else. Somehow this cookie has started to represent something MUCH bigger… if I am able to control myself, that makes me good. I have earned my gold star for the day.
Yet somehow the cycle doesn’t end, because I will find something else to struggle with….to judge myself with because I have not achieved perfection. Today its the cookie, tomorrow the mistake I made at work or the thing I said but shouldn’t have said because it made me sound less than intelligent.
Why are we so hard on ourselves? I don’t remember hearing any men complaining that they look fat in those pants… or that they are a failure because the couldn’t control themselves from drinking 6 beers and inhaling a bag of Doritos while watching the game.
Tired of second guessing myself, controlling what I eat, judging what I say, obsessing about what outfit I am going to wear. I want to eat the cookie when I want, wear what I want, say what I want, without the cookie monster standing over my shoulder.