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Here’s a news flash: men are different than women.  Shocking isn’t it? But it’s sort of a basic fact of biology.  So, the illogic of it is why do we expect men to act like women and vice versa?  There have been whole books on the subject – the whole Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus series, for example. 

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I have this conversation with my husband all the time.  When he complains about my shoes, or the length of my showers, or my overly frequently bathroom breaks, I remind him (yet again!) that these are the realities of living with a woman.  If he wanted someone with 3 pairs of shoes who takes 5 minute showers, and only visits the powder room twice a day, he should have married a MAN! 

It’s kind of silly, isn’t it?  But we do the same thing when we expect a man to care about towels on the floor, or a few dishes in the sink, or whatever it is we’re yelling at him about today.  It really isn’t fair to expect him to take these things as seriously as we do.  They simply aren’t designed for that – well, MOST of them aren’t.  I’ve had two brother-in-laws (brothers-in-law??) who would make any woman feel like a downright slob, but men like that are relatively rare.  
As girls, we were bombarded with information about the importance of keeping a neat house, and nurturing our families.  Little girls play wedding, and play house in their little Barbie dreamhouse, or whatever, but boys, not so much.  Their role models are completely different and have a different focus.  If they do make an effort to clean, it’s typically either to keep the peace with us, or because their Mothers somehow managed to drill a few simple routines in them.  But then when they slip up, and they invariably will, and we start shrieking like a banshee, it just freaks them out, and makes them not want to be around us.  

I guess the question is, does the hissy fit really work?  Sure, you may get temporary compliance from him.  At that point, he would probably do just about anything to just get you to calm down and leave him alone.  But in the long run, it doesn’t get him to care about whether or not things get clean or stay clean because it simply isn’t on his radar.  

So, what to do about it?  I think part of it is just awareness.  He isn’t doing these things to make you crazy or because he doesn’t care about you, he’s doing it just because he’s a guy.  The other thing to do is to explain to him why it’s important to you.  He still probably isn’t going to care about whether the dishes get put away, or the towels get folded a certain way, but if he feels appreciated and sees that it makes you happy, that’s going to go a long ways towards insuring a little compliance from him.  Give it a try – it’s likely to make you happier as well.  All that yelling is hard on your nerves also!  

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1 Comment on The Cleaning Styles of Men vs. Women

  1. I have a wise friend who taught me how much man need praise. of course I forget that most of the time but I know she is right . I think we just have to decide how we want to handle those things with our man …..because if we don’t got ahead of time many of us will fall into the yelling trap. and you are right, it just doesn’t work.

    your blog is looking good my friend!

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