A lot of the the time I hear people say stuff like, “you guys/girls need to decide what you want” and it’s very confusing for me. In most of the cases, this is in response to someone expressing a preference that is different from what is usually expressed by members of their social class, religion, gender or any of the ways we find to segregate people.
I have stayed away from talking about this because I believed the concept of ‘everyone is different’ is widely known by society but the more people have shown that they expect everyone to act like everyone else, the more I have found the need to address this very confusing idea.
Let me start with a recent example. In a recent discussion online about Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, I saw one person tweet ‘you guys need to decide whether you like Kim or not.’ The conversation on that day was mostly about Kim standing up for her man. With a lot of guys coming out to praise her, I believe someone who had previously seen comments against Mrs. West decided that the entire social media was one voice and whichever direction the topic was going on a particular day was what every one thought. My obvious response to this was “have you considered that those who don’t like her are not the same ones defending her now?” Which is really my entire point. It is time we came to understand in a more active way that the popular opinion at a time does not equate the voice of everyone. For a person such as myself who rarely has popular opinions, it bothers me when people try to lump me and my opinions up with that of the majority.
Another area this idea of assuming popular opinions encompass every scope of life is in relationships. We have become a people so averse to taking time to understand other people, especially those we are involved with, that we prefer to go with more popular rhetoric. So instead of finding out what the guy or girl we are with wants, we go with the things we see on tv and on the internet. Not every guy will be excited about a video game and not every girl wants elaborate dates or public displays of affection. Your boyfriend might prefer watching a rom-com to watching a Premier League match and your girlfriend might be more into watching boxing than Pretty Little Liars.
You have no business trying to figure out what men or women want. It serves no purpose trying to figure out how to treat a person based on their gender. You can’t have a good relationship with someone based on what members of their sex tend to like. The general perception is that straight guys like football and playing video games; i don’t like either of those things and anyone who knows me is aware of this fact. Inspite of the general perception, I have never received a video game as a gift because the women I’ve been with found out what I liked. It is the same for everything. If a bunch of girls say they love flowers and a few others say they don’t. Or if girls complain about guys asking for pictures one time and then say there is nothing wrong with it, you need to realise that this shouldn’t be a problem. All you need to care about are the things the girl or boy you’re with wants.
As with many things about human interaction, we’d rather have a standard play book to go by but unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. There is no manual for dealing with specific genders. Everyone comes with their own manual so don’t be lazy and try to apply what you learned about one person or what you heard is common with a lot of people, to everyone you meet. Take time to learn about each person you end up with. What they love and hate, how they love and anything else that will help you be a better partner to them.