I have spent the last week in bed. Unfortunately for me, this is not as great as it sounds. Six full days in bed, and I didn’t get any. Not once.

Jason Pesick

Believe me, the only acrobatic act that has occurred in my bed all week was on Monday, when I coughed so hard that I pulled a muscle in my back. Attractive, huh? Yes, I have been sick for almost a full week.

My illness has had great ramifications for those around me. I traded in my stiletto boots for my slippers and “sick pajamas” – a bizarre combination of the softest PJs I own, a neon pink leopard print shirt and heart covered pants that are way too short.

My housemates had to suffer the embarrassment of me coming downstairs in the middle of an after-bar looking like a pajama clad throwback from the eighties. However, the person who suffered most from my illness (aside from me, of course) was my boyfriend.

Even in my Advil and Robitussin-induced drug haze, I could see that for him, entering my bedroom was like entering hell. He knew that there would be no candles, satin sheets or Barry White crooning behind the closed door. Instead, there would be me. And I would be sick and grumpy.

Okay, I admit it. I tend to be a little demanding when I’m sick. I like to have my feet-rubbed, my pillows fluffed and new soup and crackers delivered to my bedside every two hours.

I also like to have as much sympathy as possible. I want to be treated as if my flu is malaria, or better, the plague. So when my boyfriend told me Friday night that he was leaving to go to the bar, I responded with, “Okay, sure. I’m deathly ill but I’ll be just fine here by myself. You go and have fun. Don’t worry about me, I’m sure I’ll be alive when you get back.” He exits, I pout.

Switch scenes. It is now 3 a.m. The aforementioned boyfriend comes back to find me waiting for him, a pile of tissues next to me – half are from my runny nose, half are from crying.

“How could you leave me like that?” I wailed.

“But, you said to go,” he replied, looking thoroughly confused.

“I know, but I didn’t mean it,” I said, thinking it was completely obvious.

“I will never understand women,” he replied, throwing his hands into the air.

I don’t think my boyfriend is alone in his sentiments.

I hear guys say all the time that they don’t understand women, that they have no idea what we want. Contrary to popular opinion, women are not really all that complex.

Most women want men who know that cheese steaks and SportsCenter are not the components of a romantic evening. Women want men who like cuddling as much as they do, who find normal cotton underwear just as sexy as lingerie, who remember birthdays and anniversaries and who accept that when it comes to anal sex, “no” will probably never change to “yes”.

Women want men who notice when they’ve gotten a haircut or lost weight, who never say “You’re acting crazy. Do you have your period?” and who really mean it when they say “I love you”.

What women really want is honesty. Yes, honesty.

Guys, if you meet a woman and know that all you want is a one-night-stand, don’t tell her that you want to get together again. If you say you are going to call, then do it.

Women want to be treated with honesty and respect. Oh yeah, and my friend Kara wanted me to add that women also want morning sex. See, women want a variety of things that really aren’t too hard to comprehend.

After writing all this, I realized that I should take my own advice. The next time I’m sick and I want my boyfriend to stay with me, I should just say so. I should be honest if I expect him to be honest. Well, I do want him to tell me I’m gorgeous, even in my “sick pajamas.” I guess a little white lie every once in a while is just fine.


– Cailtin can be reached at cnish@umich.edu.

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