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Opinion: 'Unwritten rules men live by' - Uncle Ebo Whyte

By Uncle Ebo Whyte
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Men have rules. They are unwritten but men take those rules seriously. If you break any of them a man will never forgive you.

A lot of people are ignorant of these rules and you will not find these rules anywhere but if you do not live by them, you will not get the best of any man, or worse, you will make an enemy of a man for life. So I present to you some rules men live by and insist on for everyone who deals with them.

Rule 1: If you are my friend, don’t chase my girlfriend or my wife.

Don’t even sleep with the girl I have ever slept with. This is an immutable rule of men for men. There’s no worse way of making an enemy of a man than to go after the woman he loves or is married to or is dating.

A man may forgive another man for a lot but no man forgives his fellow man for trying to take his woman or his girl from him and if you’re his friend then this rule extends to even his former lovers. If you’re my friend then don’t go after any girl I have dated or married before. Any love interest of his is out of bounds to you. Men who have not respected this rule have paid heavy prices except that most of them do not know what they’ve done.

Rule 2 : You should never see me crying. If you do, I’ll find a way of punishing you for it.

Men understand this rule of men. When a man notices that his fellow man is about to cry, he’ll either change the subject or say something outrageous to divert his attention from crying or he’ll leave his friend to cry in private. He will not stay around to see his fellow man cry or try to comfort him. Women on the other hand seem to have no clue about this rule.

When a woman finds her man crying, she’ll put her arms around him and comfort him and mother him. Men hate that. But even worse, there are women who love to make their men cry and they don’t know the trouble they bring to themselves and to the relationship in doing so.

It is the 70s, a friend of mine is getting married and I am the MC for the wedding. Due to accommodation issues the girl, the bride to be, had moved with the boy soon after the customary marriage rites about a month ahead of the wedding. I arrived in their house about three hours ahead of the wedding and found the girl in the kitchen and she was radiant. She was visibly happy.

Of course, I expected her to be happy after all, this is her big day. I asked her where my brother is and she said “oh he’s in the bedroom upstairs crying.” And she said that with such joy that surprised me. So I asked her, why is my brother crying on his wedding day? She replied “because I told him I was no longer going to marry him; that I was backing out of the wedding. I asked her, are you backing out of the wedding? She said, “of course not, but I am stretching him.” And she was all laughing. She was so proud of what she had done but I was alarmed for her and for their marriage.

She had made her man cry and she’s enjoying that. I knew there was trouble so I said to her “today you’ve managed to make him cry but one day, he’ll make you pay for this.” She dismissed what I said.

 Well, the punishment came six years into the marriage. He cheated on her and made sure she knew that he was cheating on her. Not just with one girl but with several.

Ladies, men don’t cry easily and men feel very humiliated when they are made to cry. When you stay around to see him cry, you are making yourself a witness to his humiliation. A man will not forgive you for that. So next time your man is crying, excuse yourself or pretend you have not noticed.

Rule 3: If you are my wife, don’t withhold sex from me even when you’re upset with me.

Men do not think there is anything that justifies their being denied sex by their women. Men do not accept that anything they have done or said or not done or not said is good enough reason to be denied sex. I do not subscribe to it but this is how men are programmed.  

I know a woman cannot give her man sex if he has not properly behaved towards her. A woman cannot give her man sex if he has not behaved properly towards her. When a man makes a woman upset and she withholds sex from him, she’s not doing so as punishment but because she simply cannot think about sex when she is upset or hurt; I get that but that is a woman’s programming.

The man’s programming, however, is that when a woman gives him sex then the woman can get him to apologise or recognize that he has acted like a jerk towards her. The question is when a man’s default program clashes with the woman’s default programming which should give way? I will that for each couple to resolve but For now, all I’m doing is to let women know how men are wired.

For men though, it is worst noting that when you ask for sex and you notice that your woman is upset with you, it pays to do the needful and address the issue and makeup before going on. If you do, you will discover why makeup sex is one of the best things God created.


Rule 4: If I kill an elephant and I don’t get praised for it, don’t expect me to kill an antelope.

In other words, if you do not appreciate what a man does, don’t expect him to do more. Men thrive on admiration and appreciation. A man does not do anything except to get recognized or praised for it, and when a man get praised or appreciated for any action of his, he does more to get more praise.

 We never get tired of admiration and praises. But when a man does not get the admiration and appreciation he expects for something he does, he will stop doing it altogether. For instance, it is your birthday and your man takes you out to a restaurant.

Don’t complain about the food in the restaurant, don’t complain about the choice of the restaurant, and don’t ask him why he did not give you the money instead. First, go ahead and heap praises on him for remembering your birthday and taking you out.


If you don’t do that, it will be the last time he celebrates your birthday for you but if you praise him, you can be sure that your next birthday will be celebrated in a classier restaurant, and you will also get the money you have been asking for. It is a simple rule for men, and it says this: even if you have to bash me, find something to praise and appreciate me for first, or you will get nothing from me.

 Rule 5: If you are a woman, don’t let me think that you are bossing me around or dominating me.

There is one fear in men and it is to find themselves in a situation where they are being dominated or bossed around my woman. Be it his boss, his girlfriend, his mother or his wife.

Men have a default programming to resist any attempt by any woman to control or dominate them, or to boss them around and every man has an inner mechanism that resists that kind of situation. This mechanism can be triggered even when the woman has no intent of dominating the man with her request.

 For instance, asking a man to clear the table after eating can easily trigger the resisting mechanism. Asking a man to fill the gas can also trigger it.  When the woman in his life asks him to do something, that mechanism is triggered, and the man’s first reaction is to ignore it. But if he cannot ignore it, then he has to obscure the fact that he is taking instructions from a woman. The easiest way to do that is for him to do what is required of him in his own time.

When he chooses the time to carry out the instructions, he is able to tell himself that he is not being dominated by his woman.

Let me use the case of going to fill the gas. Let’s say that his wife wakes up on Saturday morning to discover that there is no gas. She comes to her husband who may on his phone checking social media or watching something on his laptop and says “darling, we have no gas, please go and get us gas.”  The man has just been instructed by his wife and his internal resisting mechanism kicks in, and his default reaction is to ignore the instruction.

 To overcome that, he will have to keep doing what he was doing when the instructions came for some time, say an hour. Then when he gets up to take the cylinder for refill, he does not feel that he is obeying the orders from his wife.

Unfortunately, whiles he waiting to fuel his resisting mechanism, his wife is frustrated. If she makes the mistake of coming back to him to nag him about it, he may now decide he will not do it at all, or he will carry it out in anger and will not be nice towards her for some time as his way of protesting being pushed around.

In that case, the mood in the house becomes hostile till he works his anger out of his system. Our grandmothers knew about this internal resisting mechanism of men to obeying the instructions of a woman and so they developed a way of making men do what was required of them without making the men think they were being instructed or being asked to do it.

 They found ways of making men think that were doing them, the women, a great favour when they carry out a task the women want them to do. And they make sure that there is always a reward awaiting the man when he carries out the instructions, so they got results, and they got a happy man. But this approach requires patience and humility and clever manipulation of the male ego, something the present generation of ladies do not seem to have time for.

Rule 6: A man should never show weakness in anything.

A man can be forgiven anything among men but if he shows weakness of any sort, he is not counted among men. Showing strength is a code no man is exempted from. The problem is that no one teaches us what weakness is, and so most of us mistake real strength for weakness and then we shun it.

For instance, most men will never accept a fault or apologize for anything because it comes across as a weakness, and so a lot of men will simply not say they are sorry and yet, I find that being able to acknowledge a mistake and apologize for it is really a sign of strength. This rule of not showing weakness is also the reason a lot of men cannot show soft emotions like affection.

A man may love his wife with all his heart but to say it with his mouth is seen as a sign of weakness and so most men keep how much they love their women inside. It is the same thing for showing affection for children.

Most fathers cannot hug their children or express how much they love them, especially when the children are no longer small, again they don’t want to come across as weak. This rule of not showing weakness of any kind is also the reason why a man cannot open up fully to his woman and make himself vulnerable to her.

He cannot acknowledge that anything is bothering him because that is a sign of weakness. This rule in the man’s code is responsible for a lot of misunderstanding and confusion men experience in their relationship. It is also the cause of the early death of a lot of men. A lot of women who think their husbands do not love them will be shocked if they could open the hearts of their husbands to find how much love they have for them.

A lot of children will be shocked by how much love their fathers have for them and how much pride they have for them if only the men could open their mouths and talk. But as long as this rule of not showing weakness exists, men will continue to struggle with the burden of not showing any soft emotions.