Mansplain me away why don't you?
To take artistic liberty with a woman far greater than I am when it comes to creative writing (Jane Austen):
Yesterday, I let not one but TWO men get to me by mansplaining me. By let it get to me I mean like I wasted HOURS in total writing, rewriting and FUMING about how idiotic they both were. When it comes to whether they were in my arena or not, I went full on Katniss Everdine and wanted to slay them.
Reader, I did not. But I suspect my sarcasm still went over their head. I don’t know, after that I left the Facebook group I was a member of, because honestly I don’t need that kind of negativity in my life right now.
Buttons get pushed
Is there a particular thing that, when the buttons get pushed you’re like “hell no!” and get your friend to hold your stuff while you roll up your sleeves and dive in? Well, this is one of mine.
The problem is that I then sit there and think “what if I upset them?” or “what if they didn’t mean it that way” and worse “what if I’ve misinterpreted it”.
Why, oh, why do we do that to ourselves?
A point of fact here – anything anyone says to you is open to interpretation, your interpretation. Language is such a subtle thing that everything can be misconstrued. I’ll save the phrase “don’t take it personally” for another day.
What I should have done yesterday was get up and go out – which in reality is what I usually do, having established some great “defcon 5 button” strategies.
Unfortunately, rural Wiltshire, or my village in particular, has turned into a glorious winter wonderland, and the 20% incline road up to where I live resembles a an X-Games Ski slope… and I don’t ski.
So I let the idiots get to me.
Hang on, what IS mansplaining?
You know, this is a very good point, let me clarify…
For the men who’ve found their way over here, hi, how’re you doing! the next couple of sections are just for you!!
OK, great, but I'm sure I'm not doing that...
Right, for that, there is a diagram. Put together by one of my peers Kim Goodwin (who has written a book about user experience that is my absolute go-to guide, she’s an amazing lady).
I’ve reproduced the diagram here, but all copyright goes to her and I’ve included links to Kim at the bottom of the post
Back to whether you’re doing it or not – follow the simple chart to find out if you need to stop talking.
I might be doing it, but so what?
Here we’re back to the basics of shame and respect.
Have you ever been humiliated by someone else, simply by being spoken over, denigrated or made to look stupid for no reason? Well, that’s a little bit what it’s like for a woman, and it happens a lot.
Ask yourself this “have I read the ‘Am I mansplaining’ chart?” if the answer is yes, and you’re still doing it you may need an intervention.
Essentially, unless a woman asks for your opinion, shut up.
Where were you going with this?
Ah, yes, where I was going with this. Yesterday I let my buttons get pushed and I wasted a day being concerned with the feelings of someone who hadn’t earned my respect.
The point I’d been trying to make got totally glossed over for the simple reason that I’d said in the UK we’re legally required to offer a 14 day no quibble return on anything bought online.
The bigger point I was making, if they’d read beyond the first sentence, was that if you don’t offer a simple refund policy, one that’s both legal AND easy to follow it will impact your customer experience.
This is something that deserves its own post, as getting the basics right is really easy when you know how. Oh, and I know how. See bottom corner – “I know more and am a well(ish) known expert”.
A smallish footnote here – the business and community I’m building does not welcome mansplainers, and they will be responded to in the same way trolls & bullies are – with being banned. I don’t care who you are, if you don’t treat women with respect you can GTFO.