As a follow-up to last month’s Chat with Priscilla episode on What Men Wish Women Knew, Priscilla Shirer sits down with Annie Downs, Angie Smith, Nicole C. Mullen, and Patsy Clairmont to get the other side of the story! Catch the two-part episode on Tuesdays and Thursdays in April at 12 p.m., 6 p.m., and 10 p.m. CST here.
On Thursday nights, I eat dinner with a think tank. A symposium. A wise council.
Call it what you will, but it’s a handful of college baseball players.
As a volunteer for my church’s college ministry, I’ve gotten to know this crew pretty well and eating BBQ with them is one of the highlights of my week.
We talk about all manner of topics. Sports. Parents. Futures. Girls. How often they should be washing their sheets and towels (every week, boys, every week). At each meal, I find myself saying things to them that enlightens their little 20-something brains, but I think is common knowledge.
How often to wash your linens, for example.
I feel like I am their spy on the inside—the inside of girl brain, that is. And it never ceases to amaze me the things that blow their minds as we start to discuss the big question marks that loom over their relationships and the female species.
Like what she actually meant when she texted “nothing is wrong” without any accompanying emoji.
Like the complexity of applying eyeliner.
Like the variety of flowers that can be purchased and WHAT THEY ALL MEAN.
Like the actual huge difference between a latte and a non-fat latte.
But also? We talk about how to say goodbye.
When I tell my boys what girls wish they knew, I tell them it matters how you exit. Whether it be a class or a relationship or a business or a restaurant, you leave an impression when you leave. Slow fading is immature. Leaving in anger causes regrets (and usually also will give cause for a follow up conversation… woof). So it’s important that men learn how to say goodbye.
Those last moments are healing. They finalize. They end. That’s why we say AMEN when we finish praying—because everyone needs to know when to move on to the next thing (like eating. These boys love to eat). Express feelings. Give respect where it is due and use kind words even when they aren’t deserved. Always leave with a gracious heart and your tone will reflect that as well.
I tell them to be the kind of man that says goodbye.
Annie F. Downs is an author, blogger, and speaker based in Nashville, Tenn. Flawed but funny, she uses her writing to highlight the everyday goodness of a real and present God. An author of three books—Let’s All Be Brave, Perfectly Unique, and Speak Love, Annie also loves traveling around the country speaking to young women, college students, and adults. Read more at anniefdowns.com and follow her on Twitter @anniefdowns.