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Monday, November 12, 2007

SortaCrunchy Q&A #6 - In the minds of men

Thank you so much for your kind words following yesterday's post on D's speech delay. I followed up in the comments with where we are headed next in terms of her speech therapy. I will keep everyone updated around here!

So, today's SortaCrunchy Q&A comes from one of my very most favorite blogarinas (who just happens to have a rockin' name, too) - Megan of FriedOkra. I know most everyone who is anyone reads FriedOkra now, but I can say I knew her way back when . . . Don't believe me? Go check out her very first post and you'll find a comment there from Yours Crunchy Truly. And hey! While you are digging through her back posts, may I recommend Skin, My Congenital Inelegance, and Public Pool Enemies? Megan also has some more serious stuff there, too - some gorgeous poetry, tear-jerking mommy reflections, and the captivating story of how she and her man came to be man and wife. Good reads!

Okay, on to Megan's question: Do you ever wonder what it'd be like to be a man? I mean besides the obvious physiological differences, do you ponder the deeper ones and how they shape the male experience? Have you ever read or heard anything that seems to sum things up for you on any level? Or does the male psyche remain a mystery to you?

Well, I must start by saying that men in general (and my husband in particular) are totally a mystery to me. Just when I think I have solved that riddle, another situation arises in which I am reminded that I absolutely do not have my man all figured out. I am not sure I would want to. I like a good mystery.

Have I ever wondered what it would be like to be a man? I think so - from time to time. I wonder what it would be like to not give a second thought to getting a little sideways with a friend because you know it will all be forgotten the next time you see him. I wonder what it would be like to be in a completely foreign environment and still have a complete grasp on which way is north. I wonder what it would be like to lift the hood of a car with confidence and not intimidation.

(Please forgive the gross generalizations and gender stereotyping . . . I'm just saying that's what I have wondered about . . .)

I do ponder the deeper things and marvel at how our perceptions of the exact same situation can be so radically different.

I will say that there is a book I read that helped me enormously in understanding how the male mind reacts to and perceives a variety of hot topics - from work to money to sex to what it feels like for a man to see his wife "let herself go." Shaunti Feldhan's For Women Only: What You Need To Know About the Inner Lives of Men is a great read on this topic.

She is a Christian writer, but this book goes beyond examining what church-going men think and believe. She carefully researched and surveyed one thousand men (in both religious and secular settings) and publishes her results in this book. If anything, this book is a great catalyst for important conversations with the man in your life. After I read it, I asked The Coach about various statements made in the book; there were some on which he said, "Oh yeah, that's totally true," and other things he didn't completely agree with. Anyway, as far as getting a better grasp on why men perceive certain areas of life so differently than we do, this book is worth the short amount of time it takes to read it.

My apologies, Megan, as I feel I didn't answer this question as thoroughly as I could have if I were operating on all cylinders . . . Between a baby with a yucky cough and a potty-learning toddler and staying up to visit with my hubby when he gets home (way past my bedtime), I am afraid my brain is sorta foggy today.