When A Man Says You Nag:
We’ve all heard the bullshit- men ignore because women nag. Men “don’t know” how to have a conversation and women should pity them and leave them alone. Women want a “talking” relationship in which they change the man into a conversation obsessed woman and don’t allow him to be himself. The poor dear.
What is really happening is this: the woman is talking not because she is nagging, but because the man is shutting off and not answering questions. He is not answering questions because he is trying to keep something secret. He is trying to keep it secret because he is doing something wrong.
One partner’s stonewalling forces the other person to ask more and more questions to address necessary issues. The stonewalling partner labels this “nagging”, even though in context it is really not, and the questioner begins to have low self esteem and becomes ashamed every time she feels the need to get info or clarification, no matter how normal or average or common her level of questioning is, nor how necessary it is in context of the particular conversation or situation.
Since more men than women behave in a nasty way, they are more likely to become secretive in order to hide responsibilty for that nastiness. Since they become secretive, they become allergic to questions, even normal and necessary levels of questioning. They label their wife a nag to shut her up, and label all women as nags, even though the women are not asking any greater level of questioning than a man would.
(Similarly, whites often call blacks nags, or “troublemakers”, as a whole, because since white people harm black people with their behavior, naturally the blacks are the ones who complain! Same with Jews- ever hear of the “complaining Jew” stereotype? This is because Jews were pushed around in Christian Europe and it was in their interest to discuss it, while is was in Christians’ interest to ignore them. The abuser is benefited by silence while the victim is benefited by openness and discussion).
Talking, furthermore, is not a female thing. It is a necessary human tool- how can information be conveyed without talking? Nor is it even true that females talk more than males. Studies show that men talk MORE than women- it’s just that men are more ANNOYED at women’s talking than they are at other men’s and more than women are annoyed at either men’s or women’s talking.
The husband feels more annoyed at his wife’s speaking…so he twists reality and labels her behavior as more annoying (nagging)…because his REACTION to it or FEELING about it is different. This is lying. Your feelings about something do not change what the thing is. If you start to feel annoyed at me speaking, this does not mean I have started speaking more or in a different way, It is you who have changed, not me or my behaviour.
Of course, the man can be the one being gaslighted by the woman, too, and there are men who are the victims. But mostly, it is a greater number of men who stonewall than women, because a greater amount of men behave in ways that cause the person living with them to have to complain. So this is why I titled this piece “When A Man Says You Nag.”