Why Are Men In Charge?

For many years, I have questioned why men are in charge. I mean, this is a gender that will pay extra for chicken wings if they’re served by a woman in a tight t-shirt. They can’t touch the woman. She’s not going to date them. She is only nice enough to them to get them to order chicken wings and throw some extra money in for a tip. But the men think this is a perfectly fine arrangement and cough up the cold hard cash for the chicken wings.

Stu. Pid.

Now that I’m the mother of a boy, I’m getting a front row seat to the development of this sort of innately male behavior. I picked C up at daycare the other day and asked what he’d done that day. He very cheerfully informed me that he’d pushed P into the dirt. When questioned, he acknowledged that pushing isn’t nice and P had not wanted to be pushed. He was silent when asked why he’d pushed P at all. I don’t understand.

The mom of C’s friend T was expressing concern about their relationship because she knows T is a shover and she worries that he’s in sort of a love/hate cycle with C. I had recently watched the two of them shove each other on the playground and could not detect any emotion or motivation at all. They had been riding trikes but they had stopped and were just standing next to each other. T reached over and shoved C. C recovered and pushed T back. Neither got upset. Their facial expressions didn’t even change. It was like they were at a loss for what to do now that they were done riding trikes and settled on shoving as the next logical activity. I told T’s mom about the episode and we both shook our heads and agreed to keep reminding them that shoving isn’t allowed.

In the interest of science I started surveying men about their friendships. I asked my husband about all the pushing and shoving and whether or not it was a guy thing. He smirked a bit and said “Not all guys”, clearly mentally exonerating himself from such childish behaviors. I nodded and silently mulled over a memory of a conversation he and several college buddies had wherein they rehashed a dispute about the outcome of a video game they had played over 10 years before. I decided to broaden my definition of “shoving” to include Nintendo.

My next subjects for my study were two guys I work with. They are both fathers and basically gentle, intelligent men. When I asked if guys ever just shove each other for fun, they got visibly excited and regaled me stories of games they had invented in high school. One had been part of “Grill Shot Thursdays” where on Thursdays it was permissible to punch your buddy in the ribs without fear of retaliation. The other said he and his friends engaged in “cup checks”. I blinked at him and asked if that meant they had just walked up to their friends in the hall and kicked them in the nuts. He confirmed. Then he said “Yeah, it sounds kind of stupid when I explain it now.”

You think?

I gave up on getting solid intelligence on this from men because they’re all too busy laughing about their past antics to shed any light on them. Instead, I told the whole story to a mom friend who has a PhD in early childhood development. She told me about studies that demonstrated that boys who aren’t allowed to engage in rough play sometimes have trouble relating to other men as adults. Awesome. So C needs to push P into the dirt so that he can become a well adjusted adult. Meanwhile, the girls in his class are making leaps and bounds in writing their ABCs, constructing elaborate cities with Legos, and verbal and problem solving skills.

Seriously? Why are men in charge?


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7 comments for “Why Are Men In Charge?

  1. March 7, 2011 at 8:41 am

    Seriously – I agree. This makes me as mad as the day I realized Obama would be our candidate and not Hillary Clinton – or when I realized that someone on McCain’s campaign thought I would be stupid enough to vote for him because he picked Sarah Palin as his running mate. As IF I have anything in common with her because she has boobs.


  2. March 7, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    This helps me understand why my 4.5 year old son constantly finds it necessary to shove us. I ask why and he only tells me “I don’t know.” I ask him if it is appropriate behavior and he tells me “No, Mommy.” I ask again, they why and he tells me “I don’t know.” I guess I now know!

  3. March 7, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    I have 3 sons and now I think it all makes sense.

  4. March 7, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    heh, boys. *eyeroll*

    Have you never noticed that boys (esp young ones) are much happier and settled once you’ve “rough ‘n tumbled” them for a bit?
    I have 5 boys, and yup, they definitely need the physical play. Dunno why. *shrug* I’ve never really thought about it, I guess I just figured it was a “boy thing” I grew up with 5 brothers, so it seems normal to me. As long as they never set out to be malicious, and I always keep one eye on them to make sure no one’s getting hurt, show them how to have rough play without hurting each other, but otherwise just let them get on with it.

    Tickle fights, running jumpy cuddles, playing chase round the back yard – it’s stuff they love. In fact my girl loves it too…. mind you she has 5 brothers!

    But, I will agree with you that I dunno why we let the boys be in charge. Altho, I can think of a couple reasons…. ;O)

  5. amy
    March 7, 2011 at 9:17 pm

    I guess I am “lucky” to have girls…they just scream at eachother.

  6. March 7, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    bwhahahaha!! I have 4 boys (and hubby, of course)…I’m surrounded by the idiocracy 24/7!!! I’m in need of a desperate dosage of estrogen…I fear I may be becoming one of them!!!!!!!!

  7. Dom
    May 27, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Women: the same gender that can’t go 5 minutes without reverting to “I want I want I want”. Wanting to be taken seriously; you bleed out of your anatomy every month and one hormone imbalance can ruin a small society of peoples.

    Now, let’s see this comment get posted.

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