|Men who use the phrase "calm down."|
apparently. Can anyone take a guess?
When I read that, I immediately understood. I was married once, so I know how uttering the words "calm down," can throw any discussion into a tailspin. At least, that's what the author wants us to think.
I'm sorry ladies (if, indeed any women actually do read this blog), but you're about to get a smackdown. Let's consider something for just one moment. My immediate reaction was to think that by saying "calm down," I have, in effect, escalated a situation that could have otherwise ended constructively. But this begs the question: why the hell do we men say"calm down," in the first place if the discussion was going well?
The answer is this, ladies: you flipped out, and we're trying to get back into the realm of the rational. Oh I know, somehow by saying "calm down," we are dismissing your feelings and essentially telling you that your feelings aren't valid. If you weren't so worked up to begin with, then you would see that we are not trying to invalidate your feelings. All we're saying is that in polite society, nothing ever gets solved by losing our minds and getting worked up over something.
It's totally okay to feel incredibly passionate about something. It is well within your right as a human being to get super pissed off, indignant, upset, or whatever you want to call it. But what is not okay is to believe that somehow your feelings grant you permission to be unreasonable and completely lose your composure. Ladies, do you know what happens when men fly off the handle at each other and refuse to back down? Someone gets punched or worse.
Men instinctively resort to "calm down," because in a man's world, getting out of hand can carry some serious consequences. Aside from the fact that trying to de-escalate a situation is beneficial to the physical health and safety of everyone involved, it's an indicator of a person who is able to engage in civil interaction.
So knowing that not flipping your shit is a good thing, and it is indicative of a sound, rational mind not prone to flights of impulsivity, why do you think that just because you're a chick you get a pass to act however the hell you want? Do you think that simply because we (hopefully) won't knock you out means that you can just let loose?
Well, American society tells you precisely that. But I'm hear to tell you that you, and American society, are completely full of shit.
I work with people with disabilities. About a month ago, I was working with a client of mine. She has some serious barriers. She is literally psychotic and bipolar, and she suffers from PTSD, mood disorder, and she has some cognitive impairments. One day, she told me that she heard some people talking in the lunch room at her workplace about someone's bra being too small. She believed, in her heart of hearts, that they were talking about her.
Nothing I told her could convince her that they weren't talking about her. What made matters more frustrating is that she is aware that her psychosis spawns feelings of extreme paranoia. But whenever I told her "it's all in your head," she got upset. Why? For the same reason every woman gives:
"I feel like you're invalidating my feelings." Well you know what? Yes. I was invalidating her feelings. Why? Because her feelings did not match the real world.
Granted, she's literally crazy*, but just because you may not be diagnosed with some form of psychosis doesn't mean that every feeling you have is justified, and therefore grants you carte blanche to act as crazy as you want to act.
I hate to get scientific, but feelings are merely chemical reactions that occur in the brain as a result of particular stimuli--or sometimes, they're purely the result of your brain chemistry and how it functions regardless of stimuli. Sometimes your feelings match the real world and are justified. For example, if your man tells you that you're fat, you're likely to feel extremely hurt and upset. You would be right to express that because he was disrespectful in the first place.
But getting all upset and feeling like your man doesn't love you simply because he never buys you flowers randomly? That does not match reality (most of the time). Instead of flipping your shit and making him feel like a giant douche for not reading your mind, how about you talk to him about it? How about you, dare I say, ask for his opinion?
Imagine if a world leader ruled his nation based off of his feelings--every whim that came to his head. You know what you end up with?
News flash: your feelings, although real, are not always valid, and they do not always match the reality that exists outside of your skull.
Ladies, in many ways, the world is a logical, rational place. There is randomness, but science has taught us that reason does exist. Men try to understand that--they try to understand reality. Yes, we have feelings, but we approach them logically. You should give it a try sometime.
*My client listened to my suggestions about medication compliance, and now she functions fairly well.