Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Another reason I don't like being a girl

Getting my car worked on. It's so intimidating. Even oil changes make me nervous. I feel at a disadvantage before I even go because I'm a woman. I start running lines before I go about why I don't need a new air filter or a transmission flush. I try to guess what they might throw at me so I have a defense ready. Does anyone else feel this way? I feel like if I was a man, I'd only be approached about my air filter 1 of every 4 visits instead of every time. I feel like they wouldn't try to sell me on every service because I'd know what they were talking about. On the way here, I thought to myself that when we have kids and if we have a girl, she will be required to take an auto shop class. Heck, I need to! I do know how to check my oil, but I can't change a headlight or a tire. That makes me feel vulnerable. I want to feel independent. Like, really independent.

Am I alone in this? Do men feel this way about anything?

8 comments:

Laura said...

NO!!! I TOTALLY feel the same way!!
It's SOOO awkward and I feel like they constantly just stare at me. After I got my Jeep I just started going to the dealership so it's not as bad but still weird.
I miss the days of living with my parents and making my dad take it to the shop....
I too wish I knew more about cars. I "know" how to change a tire but I'm not sure I could do it if I really had to. :(

aaron and brittany (henck) bolerjack said...

totally feeling that! I bought "auto repair for dummies" and read it twice. I still don't like to do anything to my car myself, but at least this way i know what they are talking about. :)
-brit

Mike said...

Ummm. I feel the same way at the mechanic's! See also: anytime someone comes over to fix plumbing, heating and air and electrical issues.

Get those guys around a guitar or book store with me and I could SCHOOL them though! :-P

Mrs. T said...

landon got mad at me one time because i caved and got whatever the guy told me i needed....never again! i've learned to be strong..especially after i saw my bill

JJC said...

Okay dude. Here's the deal. I don't even know how to change my own oil, but I don't get that treatment. I think it's all in the approach. I have wanted to learn those things myself (side note I think I will look into that Auto Repair for Dummies) but let's be honest we don't generally have time or energy to put into that, and what if it's something bigger? I like your approach of having answers ready- but really I think it is all about demeanor. Walk in there like you're tough and hard and straight talking. Tell them what you want. Look straight in their eyes when you're talking and they're talking - it's the best way to show someone you're not intimidated. If they know you're not intimidated they won't mess with you. The next strategy is to look at them like they're dumb if they ask you about an air filter, and give a curt knowing "no."

You don't have to be intimidated- you know waaaay more than most people. I think the deeper issue is, you don't like to say no?? so telling someone you don't want what they're offering puts you in a position where you have to act other than you would naturally be inclined to act - so you're immediately uncomfortable. You don't have to be uncomfortable saying 'no thanks' - not to them, not to anyone. You're precious precious - that doesn't mean you have to cave or feel uncomfortable NOT caving to people. I may be totally off on that- but just a thought that came to mind. Do you generally feel uncomfortable telling people 'no' ?

Cara said...

JJ-it's true. I feel bad telling people no. I usually bite my nails and have a worried face after saying no. I will tell you that after telling me the nail in my tire was in the side wall and I had to get a new tire, I only allowed them to do what was necessary and not replace all 4 tires like they wanted. Yay me!

Josh R. said...

That's funny, I think the same thing happens to everyone. Cars today are so complicated and require dealership computers to fix almost everything, so even if you did know something about cars they'd somehow rip you off. That's part of why we traded the Ram for that old Jeep.

Of course, people have this same conversation about doctors, I'm sure.

Also, you should listen to Dane Cook's stand-up about car repair.

Sabrina.Ann. said...

I know how you feel! I always tell them no, but after awhile I start to wonder if I should give in, so that my car doesn't break down!