Sunday, November 29, 2015

Let me mansplain something to you...

I am thinking how grateful I am how my boyfriend doesn't mansplain anything to me as my mother talks about how my grandfather and father don't listen to her and constantly disregard her in certain things like issues happening with her car. I honestly don't know how she puts up with it. I used to with significant others in the past and always felt like it was condescending and like I was pretty much being told I was stupid. It in part ended a lot of my relationships because I just couldn't take it anymore. If you haven't heard the term mansplaining before here's Wikipedia's definition:
"Mansplaining covers a heterogeneous mix of mannerisms in which a speaker's reduced respect for the stance of a listener, or a person being discussed, appears to have little reason behind it other than the speaker's assumption that the listener or subject, being female, does not have the same capacity to understand as a man. It also covers situations in which it appears a person is using a conversation primarily for the purpose of self-aggrandizement — holding forth to a female listener, presumed to be less capable, in order to appear knowledgeable by comparison."
 Now as a man reading this one might ask if he has ever done this or joked about doing this to a woman. As a woman the question does not even need to posed to her if this has happened, because it has. Usually there a lot of jokes made about this but in all reality it turns into something a lot more dangerous. This becomes dangerous when for example as I wrote about my mother talking about the car issue and she almost ended up in a river due to a problem with her brakes because my father wouldn't listen to her that there was an issue and he had to mansplain to her that she was just being crazy and cars don't work in the way she was describing the problem. He didn't believe her until he drove the car a week later and almost had an accident. Then it was a problem. But he never apologized or acknowledged the issue to my mom after that. Rebecca Solnit wrote an amazing book called Men Explain Things to Me and how it actually hurts everyone in the long term and the real life issues it causes. Long story short my mom could have died because my father had to mansplain to her. Now he loves my mom a lot don't get me wrong, but she could have died because of it. Men need to wake up and realize that this is hurting the ones they love.

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