Men with Colds
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Why is there such a difference between men and women when they get sick? Why do we all have to suffer when a man gets sick? I don’t think any ONE man (not naming names here) has the market cornered on Sick Man Syndrome. This is inherent in all men.

Can somebody tell me why, when a man has a cold and a scratchy throat, he can’t just clear his throat without following it with seven other disgusting noises? Women don’t do this—or if they do, they don’t do it in the family room when everyone’s watching TV. And don’t forget the groans—they have to groan. Not big, agonizing groans. Little groans of “Oohhhhhhh,” followed by a small gasp for breath because they are so stuffed up they can’t breathe, and they want you to know they are dying. And they’ll keep groaning — in case you didn’t hear it the first time. And when they answer the telephone, they have to be sure to sound as sick and pathetic as possible to evoke sympathy from the caller.

Women get their share of colds. If she really feels lousy, a woman might take to the bed to rest, but at least she’s quiet about it. Nobody knows she’s there. She’s not honking and hacking; rather, she emits demure little sniffles whilst holding a tissue to her delicate nose. Men have to describe every single symptom, how much, and what color it is.

Women aren’t afraid of cold medicine. A hit of Dayquil and they’re good to go. Men are anti-cold medicine, so don’t offer any to a sick man. He might tell you he doesn’t like taking drugs, but don’t be fooled. Men are afraid of cold medicine because it might make them feel better, and then they would have no reason to hack and groan and sigh and sit in the chair and watch TV. They would rather blow unsuccessfully into tissue after tissue than squirt some Afrin up their nose, lest they then experience the sheer luxury of breathing.

If the cold seems to be hanging on for a while, a woman will go to the doctor. If a woman is driven to the point of going to the doctor, it’s usually because she senses that this cold is something more than a cold and will not go away without help. So she will obtain the appropriate antibiotics, jump-start the healing process and get on with life. She will do this because she knows she can’t be out of commission for long. There’s the job and the kids, and everyone knows women have to save their sick time to use when their kids get sick.

Men think it’s wimpy if they go to the doctor for a cold because what if — just what if — it is only a cold? Then, when everyone asks (and everyone will ask), “What did the doctor say?” they’ll have to answer with, “It’s just a cold.” Men think the best thing to do is wait — wait so long that everyone else in the house gets sick. Wait so long that when they finally go to the doctor and are told they have bronchitis, laryngitis, pharyngitis, double ear infections, a sinus infection and are bordering on pneumonia, they can look a woman in the eye and say, “See? I told you I was sick.”

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