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Getting Your Wife To Let You Buy Toys August 2, 2006

Posted by Andy in andy roth, Gadgets, marriage, soapbox.
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From 5-May-00 

I’ve been married for nearly two years now, which I realize to some does not seem that long but to others seems like forever. One thing I learned early on in the marriage is that my wife, and therefore all women in general, don’t share my enthusiasm for buying gadgets. Right now the married men that are reading are nodding their heads while the women are thinking “Your wife is right, what do you need all those silly gadgets for anyway?” I’ll get to that in a moment.First though, a piece of advice for any impending grooms, buy as much as you can before you are married. Otherwise, you may discover as I did that once you tie the knot, purchasing decisions will be made by a committee.So, what if it is too late for you and you are already married and are getting your planned purchases vetoed? What can you do? Well, here are some simple steps.

1) Start Early Anticipate when you are going to need something. If you know you are going to want something, plant the seed at least a month or two ahead of time. This will allow your bride to tell you no. When she does, put up something of a fight, but eventually let her win. This will make her feel good.
2) Be Subliminal Well, almost subliminal. Let a few days pass after you lose the first fight without mentioning your desired gadget. Then, as subtly as you can, make some off hand comments about how the gadget would improve whatever you are currently doing. Don’t make a big deal about it.
3) Stack The Cards OK, this is where you will start to make progress. I can best explain this by using an example from my real life. A while back I wanted a GPS. My wife could not see why we would need one. Well, one day we were driving somewhere, and wouldn’t you know it, we got lost. Then, still being subtle, I mentioned how it sure would be nice if we had a GPS to tell us where we are in a situation like this.
4) Don’t Measure The Cost At least don’t measure it in money. Instead measure it in terms of things that either your wife has bought for herself or that you have bough for her. So, instead of a DVD player costing $250, make it known that it costs the same as 2 dresses, a sweater, and a pair of shoes. This strategy can wind up costing you twice what your gadget would cost otherwise if your wife has to get as much as you do, but then fair is fair and you gotta do what you gotta do.
5) Wear Her Down She can only resist so much so often. Keep mentioning how nice the gadget is, and how much you would use it, and how it would improve everyone’s lives so much. This is the same strategy used by kids for generations when they want a dog (but I’ll feed it, and play with it, and take care of it…)
6) Create A Window Of Opportunity Finally, after going through the first five steps, what you need to do is find some great opportunity to acquire the gadget that will be over very soon. This could be a big sale that is ending, or a store that only has one left and doesn’t know when they will be getting more. Then, ask your wife again, and make sure she knows you have to act right now. This could be the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back, and you could soon be enjoying your new toy. If this doesn’t work, go back to Step 2.

So, there you have it. And to answer all you women who still want to know why we men need these gadgets, well, I think it is just part of being a man. We like gadgets, they make us happy, and get us closer to the ultimate dream of the Bat-Cave filled with things that light up and beep and the Batman Utility Belt with gadgets to use in any situation. It all works out for you too though, especially if you share interests with your husband. Though my wife objected at first, she sure seems to enjoy the home theater, the GPS, the scanner, and the dog. She also enjoys all the woman things she was able to acquire in order for me to acquire my toys. Hmm, now I’m wondering if she doesn’t have a strategy of her own….

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