Office Diaries

An insider's guide to success in the workplace

High Maintenance Men

To be fair, men deserve some of the credit too.

I'm all for equal rights and have long believed that men and women have as many similarities as they do differences. So to be fair, I think it's time that the high-maintenance men of the world get the credit and recognition they deserve for being as difficult as their female counterparts.

Certainly it's true that high-maintenance women are looked down upon because they require more effort than their perceived worth. They are accused of treating men like ATM machines where each withdrawal is a test of love. When spoken of, the typical high-maintenance female is often referred to as a nuisance, pain in the butt and total turn off. Yet, on some level her tactics work. Why? Because there are just as many men out there who need women to give them something to run away from. And run away they do. Or pull away, or stay away, or push away, whichever the case may be. These women give them all the reason they need to make sure they "don't get too close." It's easier to sign a credit card bill or tax other resources as long as it doesn't reach the reservoirs of the heart. And so we have the age-old battle between purse strings and heartstrings, and unfortunately in this society, I fear that the purse strings are winning. Let's chalk one up to the laws of attraction.

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It's nothing new really. Guys make excuses and girls make demands. Eventually it signals the beginning of the end. How could it not, when girls badger, nag and need, need, need, and guys glaze over at the mere whiff of emotion? Noting here that badgering, nagging and needing all create emotion, for better or worse, mostly worse. The difference between them however, is that women create overt drama that's hard to ignore while men generate a more covert brand of their own. Either way, they both equally create an awful lot of work for the low-to-no maintenance crowd.

And so life goes on, but not really. Not as long as relationships are more about control, than caring; power, than love; distance, than closeness; and closed minds than open hearts. This, all in the name of love? Let's chalk another one up to Happily Ever After.

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Donna Flagg is the author of Surviving Dreaded Conversations and a New York City-based dancer.

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