Mansplaining – the phenomenon recently coined wherein someone, usually a man, condescendingly explains something to someone else, usually a woman. Why does this happen? Why do people feel the need or justification to ‘splain (because there’s also Womansplaining, Whitesplaining, Richsplaining, and Gurusplaining…), and more importantly, why do we manifest a splainer into our realities?
Is there a way to defend against splaining? Or is there a way to avoid this “battle” altogether?
Watch today’s video and find out!
Great news!!! During the month of May, the Kindle version of my book: Deliberate Receiving: Finally the Universe makes some freakin’ sense! is on sale for $2.99 on Amazon! So, if you don’t have your book yet or you don’t have the Kindle version yet, now is a really great time to get it for just under 3 bucks. I don’t know if it’s worldwide or just amazon.com, so go check it out. And hurry, before May ends, lol.
My 2nd daughter was 11 when I divorced her father 7 years ago. She had three younger siblings at that time. I made some mistakes in the summer that followed, as anyone in my position is likely to do (ever watch a pendulum?). By the time the next winter had come around, I had managed to get my act together and establish some stability in our lives. It was a very rough trip, and we were in family therapy, and half of us had individual counselors as well. That child blamed me for everything bad that had ever happened. I get defensive almost every time we are in proximity because she verbally vomits on me about being a horrible mother and how she is going to take away custody of my kids, and how she has no respect for me, how I don’t love her, and how I haven’t made a single good decision since the divorce. This is so difficult for both of us that she no longer lives with me. I have apologized to her innumerable times for the mistakes that I did make, but some things she accuses me of never happened, so I won’t apologize for those. I have also quit apologizing for the things I did do, because of 50 apologies aren’t enough, then 51 won’t be either. You can probably feel how defensive I get just thinking about it. It affected me so deeply that I suffered from a hip problem for nearly a year that no physical therapist nor chiropractor could correct. Once she moved out, it cleared up in just a few weeks. So my triggers are anything to do with my divorce, and anytime I need to interact with my ex. All my walls go up and I shut out everyone.
What makes me defensive? Seeing some acquaintances being radicalised online, due to fears of losing what they have (basically, some sense of powerfulness and girls). I talk about the 4chan forums that manipulate news, and create conspiracy theories. All that bullshit that is creating those neonazis called AltRight.
Nevermind, I guess that is not defensiveness, just a feeling of powerlessness, that can create defensive feelings, if suddently there is some sort of verbal bullying. Particularly when one of them is half Angolan…
Hey Melody, you look damn good in this video and talking with full of charm and energy. I received that . Thank you :).
Well what makes me defensive is people don’t talk honestly , openly and in detail. No matter how many open end questions I asked they just don’t seem to feel like talking. And then I feel like I am just having lecture here like teachers do in the class. I have stopped imagining and presuming people’s reactions. I just let time to decide. But I do say whatever I want to say but make sure it’s honest and polite. Recently I learned from somewhere this ….. More you sweat in silence Less you bleed in war :).
Thank you so much for wonderful sharing you are doing. I too love and admire your light. Love you.
I am defensive when I am told what to do. I resent having “authority” figures, namely bosses, tell me what I can and can’t do. In my mind, I should be able to do whatever I want, but I have to do what they say if I want to continue working at said job (so I can eat and have a roof over my head – which makes me feel powerlessness – I don’t really have a choice at all, obviously a gal has got to eat). I’ve cycled through so many jobs, and save one, where I truly respected my boss, this is always an issue for me that just builds resentment to an unbearable level where I quit and find a new job. I can’t really respect someone who has “authority” over me who I perceive as either being lazy or being unintelligent. This issue with authority has led me to the conclusion that I want to work for myself, and I am currently going back to school for something where I can have my own business.
I think a lot of this is rooted in childhood – I grew up in a strict, conservative, Catholic, military family. I obeyed others until I was deeply unhappy. I still am somewhat repulsed by religion because I felt that as a Catholic I learned to be ashamed of myself, and who I was, and how I felt. That being a woman and having a sex drive was “sinful,” that being interested in women sexually was an “abomination.” I felt like anyone loving me or even me loving myself was impossible because I was such an “immoral, terrible person”. When I left home, I left the church, but my parents are frequently pushing it on me when I talk to them. It drives me crazy. On the one hand, while I have no conviction on what my beliefs currently are, beyond being a good person, I know that I don’t want to go back to a religion that says that who I am is inherently wrong.
I’ve done a lot of exploring on my own and have fortunately found a lot of authors like you, who have helped teach me how to accept and love myself. While now I feel like I am my own best friend and greatest ally (instead of my worst enemy, Yay!), I have the belief that obeying someone else is (especially if I disagree with them) a betrayal to myself. Furthermore, I have the belief that “obeying” someone else is essentially coercion and is pretty much 100% going to lead me back down a path to unhappiness.
I’m having a hard time finding balance in this situation, as even the simplest requests others put on me pretty much puts me to growling unless it is asked as a polite question rather than as a demand. If it is a friend asking a favor, and they say “would you mind…” or “could you please…” then I’m generally more than happy to help.
I’ve not really stayed on top of re-evaluating my beliefs. Three years ago, I was on top of the world, and it’s been a very gradual, but continual fall, so much so that now, as I revisit your blog and book, I’m astounded by the sheer number of beliefs that I need to purge. I’m still WAY happier with myself now than when I found your blog 3 years ago, but now I feel very cynical about the world (something that coincided with me moving back to the US from New Zealand when my work visa expired). But if my reality is a reflection of my vibration, then why the hell did I leave NZ to come back to a country I knew I didn’t like!? (other than that I was forced to by authorities because my visa was expiring) lol. Ironic. Thoughts?
It sounds to me like you need to have yourself an anger release or three, girl! 🙂 Stuff is definitely coming up, and your bosses keep poking at you. Might be time to let this out…
Why are you back in the US? Well, it could be that the US has more ability to mirror back to you whatever needs to come up. In other words, you might feel your resistance more keenly here, which will make it uncomfortable enough for you to deal with. Because you do want to deal with it. You are always exactly where you are supposed to be. Nothing has gone wrong. This is FOR you.
But also… there’s a lot of shit going down in the US right now. A lot of healing. A huge flux of energy. I believe that’s why I was drawn back here, too. To be here for this. To participate in this. Not just as a healer, but to be healed on a grand scale. We’re kind of on the front stage of the shit storm here, and that’s actually really valuable.
Maybe it’s just time to get your ass in the game, lol. 😛
Huge, smooshy hugs,
It used to be condescension was the primary reason I would get defensive. Sadly, now it seems to have spread. I often have no idea why I am so defensive, or what is setting me off. And sadly, it is mostly family that I have this reaction to. Funny world!
I tend to get defensive in situations when I feel as though someone is condescendingly trying to embarrass me in front of others. I also tend to get defensive if someone judges my intentions negatively. It gets even worse if that person rejects my explanation and inserts his or her own (worse) explanation of my actions.
Dearest Melody, first of all, thank you for this shiny word ‘mansplaining’. I wish I knew this word from the moment I was born. I’ve been mansplained to many times. When I was younger the only person I liked learning from was my sister and then when we grew older, she started mansplaining too. 🙁 My favorite teacher has always been myself. I love to teach myself and that’s also the only way I truly learn. I’ve also had the wonderful opportunity of learning from great teachers like you and so I just keep going where my curiosity takes me. However, at times, at work, there’s no other way to derive knowledge than to go around asking (due to lack of proper documentation and experienced employees’ unwillingness to transfer and distribute knowledge.) During these times, I try to deliberately focus on the content of the message and try hard to ignore the tone, gestures, vibes etc. I’ve tried this method and it works beautifully except when the mansplainer doesn’t really know what he’s talking about or isn’t really interested in taking it further. So, even if I’m focusing very hard on the content, and asking relevant and not tangent questions, this person starts to get all defensive and acts like I’m attacking them. They in turn will ask me questions like – did you not do this before? to which I say ‘no’ politely or they will get caught up in a web of their own convoluted way of thinking and understanding of the topic and then get mad at me. This is what then makes me defensive. I make genuine efforts to understand topics and explore them because I really want to understand it and that’s my only intention. I’ve noticed though that sadly, the vast majority of the earth’s population thrives on showing off their argumentative capabilities. A quote comes to mind – never argue with a fool, he will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience. I do get defensive when someone yells at me or acts like a formula is rocket science. Especially when it’s not a known formula, one that I can’t google to find out more about and one that exists only in the heads of employees who don’t see the need to write it down somewhere because if they do, everyone will see how easy it is and how even a 7 year-old child would be able to do what they do and earn as much as they do. This whole corporate culture and it’s hierarchy makes me defensive because I think we’re all equally capable with different strengths and weaknesses and there’s just no justification for meanness and rudeness. I hate it and sometimes I get defensive even for others when I see any unfairness. I’ve stopped doing this though because this obviously backfires on me and then I retreat into my shell because I don’t like arguing. I have opinions (not on everything) but I’m willing to see the other person’s POV. If they’re unwilling to see mine, I get defensive. I guess I get really defensive about other stuff too, I will pay attention to find out what it is. Thanks SO much for such a thought provoking video! XOXO Bless you.
When people get angry or hurt over things I do, I sometimes feel defensive (other times, instead, their anger or pain makes me just immensely sad). It took me the longest time to realize I overstep other people’s boundaries and have few of my own. I didn’t see what loving myself more would do to change that. Practice should help me be more receptive to my intuition too, so I’ll actually notice other people’s boundaries before invading them but I’m hearing that even that requires more self acceptance and self love. It’s been only recently that I started to accept that self love/self acceptance is key to the boundary issues. It’s taken several higher vibrational people and your blog, including the comments, to help me see that much! I’ve much more work to be done but at least I see that much. That’s both a relief, to think there’s one main thing I could do to change this, and a huge depression too. I’ve been told since I was little that I should love myself more. Haven’t managed it yet. When I sit with the feelings there’s just such an overwhelming sadness that I sink into it and only sink deeper the longer I try. So I tried cheering myself up and then just lightly touching the subject. I’m getting some small bits and pieces overcome. So I’m getting somewhere.
When do I get defensive? When I’m wrong about something. Not so much if I can’t figure out 21*49, but more like if I did something below my standards, such as leaving something important to the last minute. Or not keepping track of my stuff. I know consciously, Amy you screwed up, but I WILL NOT ADMIT IT. I WILL NOT STOOP THAT LOW! I know this is a big thing for me to work on and I know better than this, having studied your work for 3.5 years. But damn, it happens. It’s like my name is Amy. Amy doesn’t make mistakes. Amy doesn’t forget things because she has had that perfect memory ever since she was little. It’s someone else’s fucking fault… Get the idea?
Wonderful video! A few months back I did experience the “mansplaining” and I’d never heard of that term before today lol. The construction workers I had at my home kept explaining to me that the floors they installed were acceptable, even though it was not at all what I asked for. They kept telling me that I only felt disappointed, because I knew work was done to the floor and other people would never notice it if they visited. It wasn’t what I asked for or agreed to or what they said they would give me, but they kept mansplaining that it was all in my mind and to trust them. Having construction done to my home seemed so daunting and I had no prior knowledge of the process or what to expect. I manifested that from a place of self doubt and powerlessness. I definitely didn’t take that and told them to give me what I wanted. The more sure I got about my needs and taking a stand for me, the more willing they were to make the corrections I asked for. It’s all about you and everyone else is an angel, even though it doesn’t feel like it when you’re going through it.
I’m getting better at letting this go, but historically I’ve tended to feel defensive when I think my intelligence is being questioned.
But the main reason I had to comment is donkey balls. I’ve never heard anyone but me use that one! 🙂
I have an interesting one. I have an issue that I am not really defensive about and I don’t feel the need to bring anyone round to my way of thinking, but the issue keeps coming up, over and over and over. There must be something in me that is causing that, but I am not sure what as I have not felt the need to defend my position.
I do, however, get very triggered when I feel that people are talking down to me or giving advice without first understanding what my situation really is.
I also get quite uptight at work when I feel that my point of view is not being respected. That one I recognize as me not being solid in my belief that I do have the knowledge or know the right answers. There is also an issue about not feeling respected, so my point of view is also not being respected.
I get defensive around my family a LOT; so much so that I’ve stopped hanging around with them. They really do make rude, insulting comments. I think they’re arrogant and condescending. This has been going on all my life. I used to put up with it, and feel really bad about myself. Now I don’t go around them, but I do feel resentful and judgy. I don’t want to feel this way. So…Knowing that it’s my vibration is very helpful and soothing. Can I ask you, though, what kinds of questions can I ask myself about myself to get to the root of my feelings so that I can shift my vibration?
Got to say , first time ever I heard the term splaining , I will look that up in a moment for more info.
I have learnt to let things go as it serves no purpose for me so I guess I’m quite cool about stuff , however I do feel myself getting wound up when people try to convince me how bad the world is because it says so in the newspaper or on the TV. When did the media stream become the preacher .
If all had these negative emotions as a result of media then think about the manifestations.
What do you think Melody , should I stay cool about this too or is it right for me to try and lift people away from this?
Thanks for giving all this time Melody , I love it
The media is just a reflection too, Andy. People can manifest all kinds of things through it. Right now, it’s helping to trigger a lot of people. If you feel inspired to do something, check to make sure it’s inspired by empowerment and not fear (my recent video on inspired action should help). But if you want to do something, do it. See what happens. 🙂
Food for thought here. I looooooooove explaining things and I feel I do it from an empowering place too. The part I have to be much more aware of is of that information, or problem solving (I’m a solutions person) technique is asked for. I tend to hear about an issue and straight away deliver something that I feel can help the person come to a “solution”, even if it’s just feeling better. That’s how I roll with myself, and I love that solutions focus, but I know there are people out there who just want to have someone hear about a problem and just be there for them. I see the value and love in this, but it’s hard for me to do it for now! 😀
As for your question, what makes me defensive is people saying I HAVE TO do this or that to get this or that, or that there’s got to be “hustle” involved in things. That word seems to be all over the place. I’m not lazy and I love to take action, but the energy behind the “hustle” just triggers a lot of resistance in me. Money is another subject that triggers resistance, mainly when I hear it’s bad and dirty and it’s wrong to have it or want it, even when that comes in very light deliveries, it still triggers resistance and defensiveness.
And YAY for a bargain! I have a physical copy of your book and LOVE it!
I get defensive when someone insults my intelligence. I have a new job (well I’ve been there almost a year now) that is way more challenging than previous jobs and I’m still making some pretty goofy mistakes. Or at least to me they’re goofy. And I’ll have that “Ugh! I should’ve done this!” moment. I do that pretty often. I try not to beat myself up too bad but sometimes I just feel dumb when I make the mistake. A few weeks ago a coworker was very condescending toward me while explaining something and OMG I was mad. I didn’t say anything to her but I was pissed for a while. Honestly, I never really liked her much anyway. When I very first met her something felt “off” about her. I didn’t know why at the time but I do now. She’s kind of rude like that to everyone, but anyway. Yeah, insulting my intelligence is a hot button for me.
Hi Melody, When I click on your link for the Kindle version of your book, it comes up as $6.35 USD. Is the sale only for those in the States?
Yeah, I thought that might be case… sorry about that! How about a hug?
I get defensive when it comes to confrontation or disagreements. Even when a person isn’t necessarily going off and yelling at me at all, I immediately tense up and feel the need to defend myself (regardless of that though, I’ll still make sure my response to them is mature and civil). However, when I ask myself why I’m so upset, I can’t even come up with an answer sometimes.
I think I’ve built up confrontation to be such a horrible thing in my mind, that when it happens, I’m more upset that it did than I am at the person, I guess? Lol. The Universe has given me some opportunities to look into this because I’ve recently had a few strangers confront me. This stood out to me because, although there were only 3 experiences, they all happened in close proximity to each other. Those confrontations weren’t really all that bad, but up came that defensiveness and some kind of insecurity alongside it, hmm…
When it comes to the whole, being afraid that you’re wrong and they’re right dilemma, I’ve struggled with that too. I tend to hold myself back from embracing thoughts and ideas that resonate with me for this reason, and that definitely delays and complicates things… I’ll feel like I want to jump into something that feels right for me, to bask in it and explore it, but I hesitate because “what if they’re right instead”.
Also, I really like the reminder to take responsibility for how we feel and what we’re manifesting, otherwise it’s like “arguing with a mirror”. Love the example.
Hey Melody ! This was exactly the video I needed. I often get defensive when somebody tried to put in their point of view which is slightly contradicts mine , and I feel that if they can explain their point of view more emphatically than me (tone of their voice ), then my opinion is wrong somehow and then I won’t be able to get the opportunities or the offers I want to have . Also, if In a discussion , more people tend to support the other persons view than mine, I feel the same way, like I have lost it. Just as you mentioned , that this many a times happens because we are not solid in our perspective and that some fine tuning is required , I have often forced myself to agree with the perspective of someone elderly and close to me, (grandfather)although I knew something was off in it , mainly because they have lived longer than me and hence have had more experiences in life and have also lived the ages that I’m living now (for example if I’m a high school student , then he has already lived his life as a student and completed his student hood)are therefore better equipped to handle the situation. If this has happened since childhood , how can I become secure and solid in my opinion ? Also , in a group discussion how does this tie to consensus building , when all the members of the family say have a common issue and are arriving at a solution that takes care of every persons individual as well as the family’s collective perspective?
1) Yay! My hard copy of your book has curling pages. I couldn’t one-click the Kindle version fast enough.
2) For realsies: I get very defensive but only on some topics. When I do, sometimes it’s because of fear that my perspective might not be valid (it comes in the guise of “they must know what they’re talking about! I should listen to them even though it sounds weird.”) but mostly I think it’s a belief that other people can forcibly silence me or control my experience or not allow me to be heard. Hmm, this is hard to verbalize. If I show someone a piece of my work, and they don’t like it, I think I feel defensive because I feel so certain that my perspective is right (for me) and still somehow other people can overrule me. It’s a weird swirl of stuff I feel quite lost in and would love to sort out. Do I understand correctly that I want to just sit with that feeling the next time I have it until I begin to understand what I’m afraid of, what my limiting belief about it is? And that often that realization will cause the belief to begin to come undone?
1. You look great.
2. I love your energy in this video.
3. What you’re saying goes back to the boundaries video where people don’t overstep them when our vibration is high. Similar thing, if we find ourselves in a position where we’re being mansplained, we’re probably sending “I’m insecure about my knowledge” signals. If we’re totally confident in that area, the mansplaining or whatever splaining wouldn’t manifest. Well, let’s put it this way, it probably wouldn’t stop 100%, but whenever it would occur, we wouldn’t be defensive about it and so it wouldn’t really ‘register’ with us. We’d have moved on pretty quickly, it would’ve bounced right off.
That being said, I haven’t found myself defensive lately! I’m glad you asked that question because the answer is really telling. But the last time I did was when someone spoke to me as if I was a child who cannot make her own decisions. And, you guessed it, at the time I had more work to do in that area. I felt like I wasn’t “fully adult” and didn’t quite trust myself on how to handle certain decisions and, heck, life itself.
It has happened when a new awareness has come to my consciousness and it is totally different from world collective consciousness, if I haven’t yet gotten fully grounded in the new consciousness, (mostly it has been an imagined conversation in which I feel it must sound totally “out there”) is where I have felt defensive. In other words I’m gauging the reactions I think people will feel if I were to tell them this truth that has been revealed to me.
Oh man. I know that one so much! I defensively hide a lot of realizations I’ve had because I think they will sound too far out or will cause people to be angry at me for not respecting the realness of their limitations.
When I first had the realization “Artists don’t make the art, they receive the art”, I felt a lot of anxiety about having to hide it. I would imagine over and over conversations with people who didn’t get it and thought I sounded insane. Over time these imaginary conversations morphed and now I imagine breezily saying this in a Russell Brand kinda way, and it feels closer to okay. Melody: is that basically how you might want to do it in general? Imagine having a conversation about a realization you’ve had and feel defensive about until the visualization feels neutral or positive?
(Sorry, the slow learner is having a surprising realization, lol!)
Yep, that’s a good way to go about it. Keep sitting with it until it feels comfortable. 🙂
About two years ago I started reporting to a new supervisor. I would go into each meeting with data to explain what I do. When I found myself meditating before and after meeting with the supervisor I knew something had to change. I brought the data but didn’t pull it out during the meeting. Instead I let him talk and then added comments where necessary. At first it I was sure he think I knew anything. Now he has more confidence that I do know my job. That said I get defensive when someone questions my knowledge/understanding of my job.