Monday, April 25, 2011

Do Not Disturb?

Four girls sat around our kitchen table eating (and eating and eating) snacks and talking. I was in there as well, partaking of my favorite hobby, cleaning the kitchen. (For those of you new to acitymom, I like to say cleaning the kitchen is my hobby because then I feel better about getting to do it every day.) It was fun to eavesdrop on the girls as they chatted, which is a relatively new experience for me since my daughter's only been with us for a couple of years. All the girls at the table were from our block and they ranged in age from nine to twelve.

One of the twelve-year-olds said, "Whenever I get mad or sad, I just go to my room and close the door."

"Wow," I remember thinking. "Thirty-five years later and I'm still a twelve-year-old girl."

It was hilarious to me and comforting, too. Hilarious in that this aspect of me hadn't changed much in all those years and comforting for me to know this behavior appears to be such an inherently female trait. I mean, I can't remember the last time my husband or one of my sons, when they got mad or sad, ever stormed off to their room and closed (read: slammed) the door.

My daughter on the other hand...For about a year or so after she got here, we would begin to wonder if she'd been replaced by an alien robot if a week had gone by without her stomping off to her room. When it would happen, we'd let her cool down for a little bit, then one of us would go in and talk to her. And that's the trick, isn't it? Knowing when someone (a female) who's stormed off to their (her) room, wants someone to knock on the door a few minutes later to talk about what's wrong. Hint to males: the answer is Yes, we do.

I'm sorry if I'm giving away any female secrets here. Or if perhaps I don't speak for all of us and there really are women out there who storm off and don't secretly want their men to come talk to them to figure out what's wrong. I don't know why we do this, either, storm off. Maybe we need to remove ourselves from the situation for a minute, to take a breath or stop the overflow of emotion. Maybe it's about the drama. I'd hate to think it's the latter, because I'm not big on drama. And yet I do this too. But hey I'm just acitymom and not a psychologist. Maybe I should write it's one of the things they tell us to do when they pull us aside in the fifth grade, just to befuddle men. (That is when they tell us it's best to go to the bathroom together.)

It makes me sad, to think I may never know the answer or solution to this puzzling female phenomenon, so acitymom will be off to her room. Knock at your own risk.

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