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The Most Annoying Things You Can Say to a Guy

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Men reveal the six things women say that drive them crazy.
– Justin DeMarco, BettyConfidential.com

“Kids say the darnedest things, men say the stupidest things and women say the most frustrating things.” – Ancient Proverb

Alright, fine. That quote isn’t an ancient proverb and technically it’s not really a “quote” since I made it up. But it is very telling, if I may say so myself. To sum it up: Kids are hilarious; men don’t always have a filter (or know when to turn it on); and women know how to hit a nerve, often without even trying. How do I know this? Read on.

“Baby, you can drive my car…but if I’m driving, don’t say a word.”

The last thing a macho, vintage-sports-car-driving-man wants to hear while cruising around in his pride and joy is his significant other complaining about the way he drives. “I’ve thought about installing a pair of fake brakes on the passenger side of the car for my wife,” says Joey, a 38-year-old Floral Park, NY salesman. “She’s so nervous, always ‘oohing’ and ‘aahing’ when we’re in the car.”

While Joey’s wife’s favorite words in the car are, “Watch out!” his are, “Get out!” If you do have a problem with the way your man drives and you don’t want to end up walking home, I suggest closing your eyes when you’re in the car. That, or get used to public transportation.

Read What Makes a Guy Want to Kiss You?

“You better behave!”

Sure, lots of guys act childishl, especially when we’re around our guy friends. Just don’t say that to our face, and especially not in front of our friends. “My girlfriend always pre-warns me to ‘act properly’ when we go out,” says Jonathan, a 27-year-old financial advisor from Chicago. “When we go to a bar and everyone is drunk, why do I have to be the upstanding citizen in the group? I want to have fun and don’t need her watching over me the whole time.”

As much as you may take care of your man – making him lunch and cutting off the bread crusts just the way his mommy used to, or helping him pick out that perfect shirt for work – the last thing he wants is to be treated like a baby, even if he is one.

The constant reminder.

Fact: Women’s lives are more complex than ever and they can use all the help they can get. Fact: Men can have selective hearing. But just because we have selective hearing doesn’t mean we aren’t listening. Honestly, it’s usually around the fifth time we hear the same demand being repeated that the selective hearing kicks in.

“If my wife tells me something once, you’d think she’d know by now that I’ll take care of it,” says Dominick, 44, an electrician living in Brooklyn. “But no. She constantly nags me, telling me the same thing over and over. I actually forget to do things sometimes because by the tenth time around she starts adding to the first thing she told me to do. And by then, it’s too late because I’ve already tuned her out.”

“Your friend is soooo handsome.”

It’s true that we want you to like our friends. We just don’t want you to like our friends. I dated this one girl for a year, and less than a month into our relationship, she told me that she thought one of my good friends was really handsome. It made me paranoid. After that, I never wanted the three of us to hang out – God forbid I’d have to go to the bathroom and leave the two of them alone!

Nick, a 24-year-old engineer living in Boston, had a similar problem with his girlfriend being overly complimentary about his best friend. “She seemed to be flirting with him right in front of me,” he says. “When I asked her about it later, she admitted he was good-looking. I was freaking out. I know he’s better looking than me; he’s gotten all the girls since high school. I just didn’t need to hear it from my own girlfriend.”

“I wish I looked like Scarlett Johansson.”

We wish you did too! But as much as we may talk about dating or ____ (insert other crude words here) Scarlett Johansson, if we’re with you, we want to be with you. And besides, we’re also realistic. We know Scarlett Johansson would never hook up with us.

“I really hate it when a woman says she’s not pretty enough,” says Mike, a 28-year-old history teacher in Georgia. “Even confident women fall into this trap once in awhile. Sometimes, it’s like they do it for immediate praise. I’d like to think I say it enough for them to never question me: If I’m with you, then clearly I already think you’re pretty. Enough said.”

Read Men’s Most Annoying Habits

“Whatever makes you happy.” or “I don’t care – you decide.”

Please, when we ask you to make a decision, don’t shift the responsibility to us. One woman I used to date could never make up her mind. I’d ask where she wanted to eat dinner and she’d tell me to choose. So I’d pick the restaurant and then she’d complain about the lack of “vegetarian options.” The reason I asked her was because I knew she had special diet requirements (that I didn’t share) and I didn’t want to have to pay for a meal she wasn’t going to enjoy (and then hear about it afterward).

“If a girl can’t make up her mind on a trivial topic, then just imagine what’s going to happen when more important decisions need to be made,” says Spencer, a 27-year-old sports writer. “I can’t stand that whole, ‘You pick.’ ‘No, you pick.’ ‘Are you sure?’ routine. It’s just so f****** frustrating.”

Ladies, I wish I could say the six things listed above are the only comments that guys find annoying, but think of this as a starting point. My best advice? When in doubt, you’re probably better off saying nothing at all. Then we can complain about you not saying what you mean.

Tell us: What are the most annoying things men say to women?

Justin DeMarco is a New York City-based writer. He co-wrote Hockey: The Musical with Rick Wilson, which premiered at the Toronto Fringe Festival in 2008.

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Related: relationships, men, love, dating