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Women still waiting for Daddy to give them a pony

Are you shocked? I'm not. It's the reason I'm still struggling to pay my rent and bills at the age of 44. Some years ago it occurred to me that money and opportunities don't just drop out of they sky, but it's hard to shake off bad habits, especially if you're a lazy, weak female. And let me tell you, those "assertive" women? They tend to present their desires in the form of complaints, as in "Why won't they give me a raise?" and "My boyfriend/husband/whatever is so inconsiderate, he never--" insert something he doesn't do because he's not fricking psychic.

And don't blame Mom and Dad for raising girls to be "nice" and "not ask rude questions or make demands." No one does that anymore -- raises their female children to be ladies, that is. Girls today are the rudest, meanest, shrillest little harridans-in-training you've ever seen, but they still whine and complain when they don't get their way because they had no idea (it's not in the female chipset) that you could simply ask. What's the worst that could happen? You get told "no." Of course a woman hears "no" and her uterus falls out and her tits sag to the ground, but that's another story.

(Via somewhere in the wilds of Ace of Spades.)

Comments (9)

Guess you didn't read the whole article, eh?

Their study, which was coauthored by Carnegie Mellon researcher Lei Lai, found that men and women get very different responses when they initiate negotiations. Although it may well be true that women often hurt themselves by not trying to negotiate, this study found that women's reluctance was based on an entirely reasonable and accurate view of how they were likely to be treated if they did.
"This isn't about fixing the women," Bowles said. "It isn't about telling women, 'You need self-confidence or training.' They are responding to incentives within the social environment."

I would think that any reasonably socially observant person would have figured that one out by oh, the age of 13 or 14 - women actually do confront a unique set of tricky social issues that are not, as a matter of fact, the result of our bad characters. (And I don't think I'd recommend Ace of Spades blog to my daughter as the go-to source for intelligent discussion of such issues.)

I've looked in vain in my post where I recommended Ace of Spades for your daughter. And actually, I'm not sure I'd send her to the Washington Post either... I happen to read Ace's site because it amuses me, but this comment actually struck me as true -- based, of course, on personal experience, not studies from learned bodies -- or newspaper articles.

And what is the basis for the "entirely reasonable and accurate view of how they were likely to be treated if they did" negotiate? I'm just not buying it, because I've heard that before. "I'm just not going to bother asking for a raise, I know they'll just patronize me and treat me like I'm crazy." That "I've been treated badly in the past so I assume I'll always be treated badly everywhere I go" is the same self-defeating passive-aggressive stuff I've been hearing from other women (including myself) all my life. It's a great excuse for not doing anything. It also sounds like the women cited in the article just can't take the stresses of negotiating, which doesn't bode well for the advancement of women in business. The push to make everything "nice" and "easy" for fragile, timid females (which is what they come off as) in the business world -- and not just the business world, but other parts of society as well -- so they will feel more "comfortable" working outside the home (or serving in the military, or going to church -- so much comforting to see a nice lady minister instead of some stern old man) is more destructive to female independence and strength than ten thousand male chauvinists. A weak society, where everything has to be approached sideways and indirectly lest someone's feelings get hurt and they burst into tears, can't actually protect its citizens.

Men, of course, have their own ways of shooting themselves in the foot out of inherent laziness and unwillingness to change, even for the better. It's human nature. And they have their own ways of reacting badly to refusal. Perhaps in the interests of "balance" and "being fair" I should have included those in my post. But I'm not interested in being "balanced" or "fair."

I am left wondering about the application of the adjective "unique" to something that affects more than half the population.

And it occurs to me that the idea that "negotiating" is seen as an aggressive move is also questionable. Since when was negotiating synonymous with demanding and arguing? I thought "negotiating" is what women do all the time, and that what we need to be is more "demanding." Now even negotiating is seen as being assertive? I sense linguistic goalposts being moved.

Rita [TypeKey Profile Page]:

So that's how that happened, someone told me No.

But seriously, I've rarely experienced anything close to that kind of treatment at work. Must be that 'I'm not a whiner' thing.

I think it was God who told me "no." Actually he hasn't -- I still have my darn uterus. And it hates me.

Rita [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Heh, mine started that, and it's now in a landfill somewhere. Good riddance I say.

As far as work, I've found that if one acts (and dresses) as if one expects respect, one is usually more successful in getting treated that way.

AOG - "unique" as in "peculiar to one group and not another". E.g., "worrying about getting the crap beat out of you in the schoolyard is, in most schools, a problem unique to boys". (Hey, at least I didn't say it was "very unique".)

Andrea - the article discussed experimental results, not women's subjective descriptions of their work experiences. Women who negotiated for more money suffered measurable negative social consequences. There was nothing whatever in the article concerning "reasons/excuses given by the non-negotiating subjects themselves about why they chose not to negotiate." Now, you might have reasons for thinking that the experimental designs were crap and the results worthless, but that's a different story.

Rita - the issue is one of general trends in human behavior. They exist or they don't, your or my anecdotal experience notwithstanding. If you were advising a young woman heading out into the world that "if one acts (and dresses) as if one expects respect, one is usually more successful in getting treated that way" you are telling her what is true, and good advice. Telling this same young woman that people are sex-blind and she need never calculate the possible negative consequences of "unfeminine" behavior (e.g., straightforwardness) is really, really stupid advice.

Negotiating in one's own behalf is certainly important, however, it can be harmful when it shades over into opportunism. IBD had an excellent article on this which I summarized here.

I think a lot of careers have been badly damaged by people not understanding the ambition/opportunism distinction.

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