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Subject: I actually needed to explain to my wife last night that "I don't care" means just that. rss

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Mike Norris
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Last night, my wife was throwing out ideas for dinner. She recommended Taco bell. I was so hungry that when she asked if that is fine or if I wanted something else, I told her "I don't care".

Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"

I thought we were going to Taco Bell. So I had to explain that when a guy says "I don't care" it means that they don't care...its fine. It doesn't mean "I don't want to go there so pick another place".

How messed up is that?
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About the 2:15 mark.

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demondude777 wrote:
Last night, my wife was throwing out ideas for dinner. She recommended Taco bell. I was so hungry that when she asked if that is fine or if I wanted something else, I told her "I don't care".

Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"

I thought we were going to Taco Bell. So I had to explain that when a guy says "I don't care" it means that they don't care...its fine. It doesn't mean "I don't want to go there so pick another place".

How messed up is that?


Are you new to this?
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I'm on your wife's side here. I hate the "I don't care" answer. Why didn't you just say "Sure that sounds fine"?
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"I don't care" LITERALLY means you have no opinion either way about the suggestion, but telling a spouse you don't care about a suggestion they made implies that you also don't care about their opinion which led to the suggestion. (And, at the extreme: "I don't care... about you," but I think that leap of logic only starts to happen at the tail end of relationships...)

However, this is something I've only recently figured out after twenty-plus years. I always end up apologizing for these sorts of things, (I'm the one whose communication skills deteriorate the worst when I'm hungry), and once we've both eaten the problem usually fades away...
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demondude777 wrote:
Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"


"To a real Mexican restaurant." ninja
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demondude777 wrote:
Last night, my wife was throwing out ideas for dinner. She recommended Taco bell. I was so hungry that when she asked if that is fine or if I wanted something else, I told her "I don't care".

Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"

I thought we were going to Taco Bell. So I had to explain that when a guy says "I don't care" it means that they don't care...its fine. It doesn't mean "I don't want to go there so pick another place".

How messed up is that?


I don't care.
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Mike Norris
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MWChapel wrote:
Are you new to this?


Haha, no, not really. I have been down this path many times, but she always explains what she means to me....so I figured I would do it back this time. I wanted to see if she would understand from my POV. She didn't

wmshub wrote:
I'm on your wife's side here. I hate the "I don't care" answer. Why didn't you just say "Sure that sounds fine"?


Honestly, I don't really like Taco Bell, for this main reason:

matthean wrote:
"To a real Mexican restaurant." ninja


But the I don't care was because I knew she wanted it and I was hungry enough that I didn't care what food it was...just that it was food.

But it is ironic that, my wife...being mexican, would rather have Taco Bell over authentic anytime.

To the others that posted...thank you! It is so crazy how different men and women are.....
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wmshub wrote:
I'm on your wife's side here. I hate the "I don't care" answer. Why didn't you just say "Sure that sounds fine"?


A better answer would have been "It doesn't matter to me." That gets your point across that you have no opinion either way, and it lets your wife know in language she will understand that you have no preference either way.

The best answer would be: "I'll happily eat wherever you want to go, dear."
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demondude777 wrote:
Last night, my wife was throwing out ideas for dinner. She recommended Taco bell. I was so hungry that when she asked if that is fine or if I wanted something else, I told her "I don't care".

Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"

I thought we were going to Taco Bell. So I had to explain that when a guy says "I don't care" it means that they don't care...its fine. It doesn't mean "I don't want to go there so pick another place".

How messed up is that?


I think there are guys who would choose "I don't care" intentionally to send the message that there's a reason they would normally object, but it isn't terribly salient at the moment. Their partners might reasonably fear that the salience of those objections would increase after the first few bites, and she would then suffer resentment for having made the suggestion in the first place.

This all gets even worse when you think about the fact that, when we're distracted or not thinking clearly about answering a question, "I don't care" is a common way to make the question go away. So, even if you meant exactly what you said on this occasion, there's a lot of ambiguity because of the way those words tend to be used at other times. That ambiguity puts her in kind of a crappy position: choosing without really having gotten from you the information she needs to choose wisely. As has already been pointed out, there are several other ways of conveying your position which don't sound like you're just not giving the matter any attention, so it seems sort of inconsiderate to choose the words you did, even if they were literally true.
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This might be a UK thing but to me "I don't care" carries really negative overtones. It implies that no matter what the decision is, I won't be happy, or even interested.

If I want to say that all of the options are agreeable, I'd say "I don't mind" - i.e. whatever is decided, I won't object.
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matt_k wrote:
This might be a UK thing but to me "I don't care" carries really negative overtones. It implies that no matter what the decision is, I won't be happy, or even interested.

If I want to say that all of the options are agreeable, I'd say "I don't mind" - i.e. whatever is decided, I won't object.


Exactly what I would have said, "I don't mind" is a passive response whereas "I don't care" nearly always comes off as negative.
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Never make the mistake of believing that when she says "I don't care," that she doesn't care.
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wifwendell wrote:
demondude777 wrote:
Last night, my wife was throwing out ideas for dinner. She recommended Taco bell. I was so hungry that when she asked if that is fine or if I wanted something else, I told her "I don't care".

Now you all know what came next: "Fine, where do you want to go, then?"

I thought we were going to Taco Bell. So I had to explain that when a guy says "I don't care" it means that they don't care...its fine. It doesn't mean "I don't want to go there so pick another place".

How messed up is that?


I don't care.


Fine!
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matt_k wrote:
This might be a UK thing but to me "I don't care" carries really negative overtones.


It does here too, but it also depends on how it is said, to whom, and the context. Example:

Guy 1: Hey John, do you mind if I eat the last cookie in the box?
Guy 2: Nah, I don't care.

That is a pretty standard reaction that doesn't really carry any negative overtones....but the listener would be expected to intuitively understand that.

That is what caused my issue.
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Girls are stupid. 'Nuff said. Sorry ladies.
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stormseeker75 wrote:
Girls are stupid. 'Nuff said. Sorry ladies.


I think it's more that they operate on a whole separate wavelength. They think all the time, about a million things at once, and have all these complicated rules and undercurrents.

Guys? We're much simpler.

So communication: girls assume we're doing some sort of convoluted logic stream, when really we're just saying we don't care if we eat tacos.
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stormseeker75 wrote:
Girls are stupid. 'Nuff said. Sorry ladies.
You forgot "icky", too.
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demondude777 wrote:
But the I don't care was because I knew she wanted it and I was hungry enough that I didn't care what food it was...just that it was food.


Then you need to say "That's fine" because you knew she wanted to go there, and you had no better alternative.
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Well then! Thank you, Debbie!
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Koldfoot wrote:
Yeah. Some know-it-all with no experience in life is waiting to pounce, but here I go.

Worked in environments dominated by women for years. Had to give it up because of this very thing.

When you talk to a woman, she doesn't hear what you say. She hears everything you've ever said before with particular emphasis on things you never remember saying. She then reads more into your body language than you ever intended to say. She then takes all of that and completely disregards it and hears what she wants to hear.

Just say, "Yes."


Not only that, but they'll make up something about how your "voice sounds" and ascribe feelings to it that you don't actually have. They won't acknowledge they're interpreting things through their own filter of how THEY feel that you didn't know yet that they were having.
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Yeah,

I don't care drives my wife insane.

So, we started; one person picks three restaurants they want to go to and the other PICKS one of them to go to. (Of course that was before we had to figure three different kids in the mix)
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Guantanamo wrote:
Yeah,

I don't care drives my wife insane.

So, we started; one person picks three restaurants they want to go to and the other PICKS one of them to go to. (Of course that was before we had to figure three different kids in the mix)


I've tried that with my wife. All I get is, "No, I don't want to watch any of those three."
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