If there was any hesitation in your mind when you read the title question, you’re whipped.* You might as well break out the handcuffs and hand the key to the chick who’s running your life.
But there’s hope. Because you’re whipped, you probably can’t go cold turkey and stand up with your balls in your hand. You need a doable strategy, preferably something a little passive-aggressive that can fly under the radar and eventually help you rescue yourself. A good way to find the light is to go on some sort of adventure with other men. Here’s what you do:
1. Start talking about the trip at least six months in advance
Have your buddies send you a few text messages about it when you’re sure she’ll be around to hear and see them come into your phone — and notice your response. So your buddy texts, “About the motorcycle racing class . . . you in?” Your reply can be non-committal, like, “Man, I’d love to . . . let me think about the logistics. I’ll get back to you.”
It can work with a phone call, too, or a casual mention during a backyard barbecue. Your buddy probably knows you’re whipped, so don’t worry about eliciting his help. (Heck, it’s a man’s duty to help other men extricate themselves from such situations so drop the weak pride.)
2. Show your interest
A couple days later, bring home a motorcycle magazine, but don’t get flashy with it. Just be seen reading it or leave it where it can be noticed.
3. Use the future because it’s off her radar
If you’re whipped, you’re going to have to discuss it, but try not to ask for permission. Think, “Hey, so Brad’s got this motorcycle racing class set up for September for a couple days . . . can you think of anything we have going on in September that would make that impossible?”
When there’s no real problem, you’ve got to man up: “Cool. I think I’m going to do it,” you say, with a tone that indicates you’re a little surprised at yourself. “I’m pretty stoked actually.”
If she crushes you right here, you’re in deeper whipped trouble than most men. The bad news? You’re going to have put your foot down and piss her off. The good news? At least she’ll have several months to get used to the idea that you’re going . . . or try to undermine it by getting her favorite niece to reschedule her wedding during motorcycle racing school. Either way, you’re heading in the right direction that will end up with you either going . . . or setting the stage for a righteous discussion where you call her out for ending the trip because you know it was on purpose and that it was bullshit. Don’t let her sweet talking honey lips distract you.
Most likely, though, you’ll get at least a soft yes several months in advance, even if she assumes that you won’t be going.
4. Amp it up
During the next two months, bring up how amped you are about the trip, and do this at times that aren’t appropriate to discussing it . . . like when she’s leaving for work or yoga. It also works when there’s an outside reminder of the trip, like when you see a motorcycle race on TV (or whatever it is you’re doing).
5. Praise her for supporting you
Say how surprised you are about how cool she’s being about your trip. She might see through you, but you’re building momentum, and you’re slowly but surely painting a picture of you doing the trip in her mind — and in your own.
6. Let her overhear you talking about it on the phone
This is a clear indication of how excited you are about the trip, and if you can talk about planning elements, all the better.
7. Man up
If a real problem arises, well, hey, that happens, but if she invents piddling excuses for you not to go, call her bullshit, be a man, and go anyway.
If you follow all of these steps and you can’t find a way to make something manly happen, you fail. Never use her as the scapegoat again, even in your own mind. You’re still whipped — worse than ever — and it’s your own damn fault.
Look, every relationship should be one where both of you do fun things together . . . and both sides get out and do things on their own with their their own friends — that’s healthy and it needs to go both ways. If you’re not supporting your wife or girlfriend in this, you fail yet again. Balance.
So what’s it going to be? Is that the way you want to live your life? And are you the man that your wife or girlfriend really wants? Look, we believe that the best partners appreciate those who get out and do more with their lives. Just saying.
* Whipped is not exactly the same as being in a rut. Maybe the daily pressures of being a family man have led to a routine, and if that routine leaves you tired and irritable, it’s a rut. Read Rhythm vs. Rut for more.