RULES FOR MAN/WOMAN TALK

RULE 1

MAN: Thou shalt talk to a woman.
WOMAN: Thou shalt listen to a man.

RULE 2

MAN: Thou shalt draw pictures for a woman, not make points.
Thou shalt throw dark around things, not light on things.

WOMAN: Thou shalt make points with a man, not draw pictures.
Thou shalt throw light on things, not keep them vague.

RULE 3

MAN: Thou shalt get off track with a woman and talk in circles.
Thou shalt free-associate with a woman.

WOMAN: Thou shalt exit the merry-go-round with a man and stick to the point.
Thou shalt weigh thy words with a man.

RULE 4

MAN: Thou shalt avoid conclusions with a woman; keep it open-ended.
WOMAN: Thou shalt risk closure with a man; resist keeping all options open.

RULE 5

MAN: Thou shalt lay down sense and pick up on feelings with a woman.
WOMAN: Thou shalt hold thy feelings and stick to sense with a man.

RULE 6

MAN: Thou shalt be silent about sex and verbal about security with a woman.
WOMAN: Thou shalt be silent about security and let sex into the light with a man.

RULE 7

MAN: Thou shalt be positive about femininity, or silent, with a woman.
WOMAN: Thou shalt be positive about masculinity, or silent, with a man.

RULE 8

MAN: Thou shalt never argue with a woman; agree quickly with something she has said.
Thou shalt talk cooperatively, not competitively.

WOMAN: Thou shalt not agree with a man, unless you truly do; argue with him reasonably.
Thou shalt add fair competition to your kind cooperation.

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These and other "rules" are amplified in this book. The introduction, which follows, amplifies:

INTRODUCTION

There is man-talk and woman-talk--and the modes are distinctively different. Men, in the proverbial parlor, talk one way, while women, in the kitchen, talk another. While separate, each gender often puts down on the other:

Man: Just listen to those women chattering away.
Woman: All those men do is argue about sports.

When we get together around the table we often try, at least temporarily, to be civil with one another. Women may suspend their natural mode while men try to make what they privately call small talk. Soon bored, predictably, we part when eating is finished. Men retire to the parlor; women return to the kitchen--excuses, much of the time, for returning to our own native ways of talking.

Past the criticisms (Women only chit-chat. Men just want to argue. etc., etc.), there often lie sincere desires to talk with one another. Men complain that women wont listen to them; women complain that men wont talk to them--expressive of the difficulty of bridging the communications gap.

This book is based on the premise that men and women each have distinctively different ways of talking which naturally conflict with each other. The communications gap is inevitable so long as each gender insists that the other give up their own way of speaking and talk the way we do. The battle of the sexes, brought to the realm of conversation, is, all-to-often, which mode will prevail--parlor talk vs. kitchen talk, man-talk vs. woman-talk. Will men learn to talk like women? Or will women give up their way and learn to talk like men?

The gap may, however, be bridged if we cease warring, stop complaining, and come to face and accept our differences. The book begins with a list of rules for man/woman talk, for man talk, and for woman talk. Next, the rules are explained, followed by a more detailed analysis of the different modes of talk. Understanding, hopefully, may oil the machinery of compromise which is essential if men and women are ever to learn to converse with one another intimately and lovingly.

Toward that end, this book is pointed.

(From: The Man/Woman Talk Book)

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