Like all of my blog posts, you are just going to have to hear me out on this one. Today I am thinking about how women "dog" each other. By which I mean, we communicate in a way that is similar to how dogs communicate. Its interesting. Yes it is.
I did say hear me out, yes? Ok then.
So here is what I'm noticing. Women have a couple of forms of communication with other women in which they display classic canine behavior. One such example we'll call the Appeasement.
The Appeasement is typically found in the form of a flattering compliment about another woman's outfit, shoes, hair, jewelry, general overall style, sunglasses, you name it. This is our IN. This tactic is used when we want to make another woman feel relaxed and at ease, and even when we want to lift her status in reference to our own. We want her to know that she is looking good, that we approve of how she has styled herself, or that it appears she is losing weight.
We do this for the same reason that dogs display appeasing or calming behaviors. It is a signal that we come in peace, that we are friendly, and sometimes even a display of discomfort and looking for a way to start conversation with someone we aren't as familiar with. Luckily we don't run over and sniff, then lick the other woman's mouth. So there is that. Score one for the chicks.
Another interesting communication behavior I notice with some women is the subtle notification that you are on shaky ground, and she would like to keep you there. This form of communication we will call the Warning.
The Warning can be expressed a number of ways, both verbally and non verbally. A common form of the Warning is one woman making a remark about another woman that is neither outright negative, but not positive either. It is a comment meant to make the other woman unsure, as the speaker herself is unsure and wants to convey that message. It can take the form of something like, "Oh, Darla, I didn't know you were into comics..thats...interesting." Accompanied by non verbals such as raised eyebrows and a body posture that moves away from the other woman, this is clearly a sign that she is not included and separate of the speaker. Moreover, the speaker is keeping her there. The signal is usually received and understood, creating a new relationship structure between the women.
Again, while this is better than baring our teeth, raising our head and ears and giving a low growl, it is not as obvious but just as effective. Our way of doing it bites underneath the skin, though. We are able to inject a sort of suspicious unease into the situation and therefore, into the other person, with the smooth movements of a practiced hater.
We can let you know you are about to cross an invisible line into your own personal hell and yet we are also able to diffuse a situation or put ourselves in good graces with people without even warming up a single neuron.
Is this inherent? Did we learn it? Perhaps watching, like when we saw our mothers putting on makeup, we imitated the behavior, not even understanding what we were doing. Can we teach other things the same way? I don't know about you, but this has me thinking. I want to see how I can change other people's behaviors by enacting rituals in their presence. I wonder how long it will be before I can get a man to scratch at his upper chest/shoulder like he is adjusting a bra strap, because I do that shit all the time.
Friday, August 15, 2014
I need a shrink. Or whatever politically correct version of a person who can hold the bowl and scrape the sides while I empty the contents of my bullshit addled brain into a bundt pan so we can eat my pineapple upside down crazy together.
If you know someone good, feel free to pass along their info. I prefer to meet in person, as I believe my showered, gelled, manicured visage helps people to believe that the things falling out of my mouth like cows from the sky in a trailer park tornado are totally normal and then they will tell me that I can continue to express all of that to them. But you know, clinically, in a licensed therapist sort of way.
I can't share all of my insanity with people I know. First of all, they have put my station on their first button of the car radio and they know to tune me out as soon as this static starts up. Secondly, they have all heard different versions of my shit and they aren't even sure what to make of it anymore. They helpfully offer their time and companionship, solace and booze, but I need the real deal. With the booze. Do they have shrinks like that? Or is that only in 60's television shows? I'll get my bouffant hair and short dress on if you hand out whiskey. Ok that sounds like a different kind of show. But you understand.
I need someone with the capacity to own my very full brain for a moment, even if it is in pieces. I need a place to dump off all of my insecurity about how lame I am, my neurotic fears about strange distant people and places, and the fascination I have with string theory and the connectedness of all beings. And that person needs to LISTEN and not give me a 'diagnosis' or pills. I just need two hands that belong to another rational person who is used to listening to crap like this and will find my brand of it utterly charming.
At $200 an hour, I hope you can find me charming. Shit, for that kind of scratch I would wear that mini dress and listen to your bullshit.
Let's make this happen.