46 Things Men Do Intending To Be Helpful That Women Wish They Would Just Stop Doing Altogether

Sometimes in life, it’s the thought that counts. But other times, particularly when picking out a gift for your partner of 5 years or when listening to your girlfriend vent about sexism at work, it’s probably best to have more than just that one obligatory thought.

According to women on Reddit, men often do things intending to be helpful that are actually perceived as inconsiderate, so below, you’ll find some of these behaviors women are begging them to stop doing. Be sure to upvote the replies you resonate with, and feel free to take note of anything that might need addressing in your own relationship.


Thinking that I need practical advice when I’m just trying to vent. Focusing on problem solving instead of listening.

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When men refuse to go through a door I've opened for them, grabbing the door over my head, and insisting I go through first. Bruh, I'm just trying to be nice, I'm not challenging your masculinity.

I know they think they're being chivalrous and kind... but it comes off misogynistic. You simply can't bear the thought of a woman holding the door for you?

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It's really really annoying when guys insist on doing something nice when I tell them no. More than once I've had to straight up argue with guys who insisted on being "gentlemen". It's not even a romantic angle thing, it's just an incredibly patronizing "I know what's best for you" thing.

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Guys often do what *they* think is a nice thing without actually considering what the other person would perceive as a nice thing.

For example, buying me flowers when I'm pissed off that they were disrespectfully late for a date and haven't been answering texts regularly. You could just... promise to not do those things anymore and then legitimately never do them anymore. I'd prefer that over flowers.

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Make big grand gestures because they think that what girls want (thanks movies and social media), ignoring the fact that you're a very low key person who hates attention.

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Mansplaining. Do things for me when I have indicated I prefer to do them myself. Thinking that the response they would want to something is the one I would want, without actually asking me or listening.

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I've had several men insist on helping me lift something they think is too heavy for me while I'm at work. I have to explain that I was hired to do a demanding job and I need to be physically capable of doing it, and their attempt to "help" me is actually hurting my image.

Image credits: SheWhoWelds


This whole, 'oh if I see another guy harassing you I'm gonna beat his a*s'. Unless I specifically ask you to do that (which I won't because that's stupid) you're just going to make the situation worse, get hurt and make it about your heroism (or pain when you likely get battered)

There are ways to help in those situations without making it more dangerous for everyone involved

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Say things like “there are men who actually love [thing you’re insecure about]. I for one actually love [thing you’re insecure about]” when you open up about your insecurities. It’s not about whether men like something or not. Whether I love my own body shouldn’t be determined whether there are men out there who find it attractive. You could have a 100 men compliment the thing you’re insecure about and still hate it by the end.

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Most compliments on my physical appearance, annoy me.

I know that most women are insecure but, I'm not and idc if you desire me sexually.

I know I look good. Try and give a meaningful compliment.

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Unsolicited advice on ways for me to get fit and/or live healthier, particularly if they’re my partner (they think they’re being supportive but what I hear is “you’re fat”)

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When my husband cleans the kitchen its like he thinks he did me a favour and then expects a thank you. Its not just my kitchen, im not thanking you for something you should do more often...

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My rage soars when I get the: “what can I do to make it up to you, now?” question. After I’ve explained that I’m mad they did this disrespectful thing. And what they mean is ‘is there a gift I can buy you to fix this so that I don’t have to change my actions’

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"let's just do everything your way. You can decide. I have no opinion"

Sir this is your date/wedding/house/kids as much as mine. It doesn't come across as thoughtful, it comes across as you not giving a s**t.

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Thinking sex cures everything.

Image credits: EnvironmentalLuck515


My motorcycle stalled and wouldn’t start again. I was pushing it down the street back to my house when this guy saw me and insisted that I needed help. He pushed my bike a total of ten feet before he dropped it, picked it up and dropped it again, then started complaining that it was too heavy. Thanks to his “help” my poor bike got all scratched and dented. Funny I was doing fine on my own without him?

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Assume things, my partner will sometimes just assume I'm going to say no, therefore doesn't tell me or ask me, and when I confront him about it, he just says "I was going to ask that but i didn't think you would want to"

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When traveling alone on a plane, I’ve had men ask if I need help lifting my bag into the overhead bin. I say no, but they grab my bag and do it anyway. It’s so rude and patronizing. I am more than capable of lifting my own bag or asking for help if I need it.

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Not being able to tell me the truth because I (21F) was "too sensitive".

He (22M) dated my best friend (20F) for weeks and didn't wanted to tell me anything because he thought he will hurt me. The rest is history.

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Doing things for me instead of teaching me how to do it. I want to learn; I don’t want it handed to me.

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Buying generic gifts. For example, one birthday my then boyfriend of years bought me a silver pendant necklace that looked like whatever you usually see in a Jared commercial. I don’t wear jewelry often and when I do it’s gold and isn’t that style at all. So while the gesture of the gift is appreciated, it also says you could not take the time to figure out what I like, and just went with what product marketing decided women want.

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I'm sure the guys who come here, asking questions like this trying to understand women, are attempting to be thoughtful. The thing is, any attempt to figure out what we like as a group is doomed to failure. There are roughly 3.5 billion women on the planet, and any group that size will have different opinions on lots of things. Being thoughtful is about paying attention to the individual not making assumptions based on what some people on the internet said.

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Letting me on the elevator first if it's just the two of us and we're strangers. I'm going to need you in my sight the whole time thankyouverymuch.

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Trying to be supportive or validating by saying things like, "You're feeling [type of way] right now" or "I know you're thinking [thoughts]" that are not at all how I'm feeling or what I'm thinking.

Instead of being thoughtful, it comes off as assuming they know me better than I know myself or shows that they've totally misinterpreted my thoughts and feelings and just assume things about me that aren't true.

It's infuriating and actually *highly* invalidating.

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Being too pushy in order to comfort.

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When I'm sick and they INSIST "okay, I'm coming over; what can I bring?" Why would you come and get sick when I'm sick? I get that it's sweet and a great gesture, but if I'm sick, I'm not in the mood to entertain, have sex, or talk much. Just telling you I'm sick so you know why I'm not texting a lot ?

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This is very me specific, but I hate being the first person walking into someplace new. It's an anxiety thing I suppose. My partner however, always wants to open the door for me, which is sweet but results in me...walking in first.

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I dated a guy once who got me a heart-shaped pendant necklace. Which in & of itself was SO not my style. Heart-shaped ANYTHING, big nope.

But the kicker was that he knew — before purchasing the necklace — that I already had a necklace I wore every single day that had major sentimental value to me, because the pendant held my grandmother’s ashes.

Upon giving me the necklace, I expressed to him my confusion as to why he would choose that specific jewelry when he was well aware of the fact that I didn’t wear any necklaces other than my grandmother’s pendant.

His response? “Well, I thought you’d add it to the chain so they could be together.”

I refused the “gift.”


When I am upset that they said/did something they knew I would be annoyed about, and then want to give me a hug or kiss to make me feel better. Dude, it's you who wants the hug or kiss to feel better, not me.


Surprises. For some it might be the pinnacle of thoughfulness, but for me it's stressful. I've been told off before for making plans on a night he planned us a romantic dinner at home. Dude you can't be mad at me for dissing an event (on a random night for no reason) that you didn't tell me about.

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When I share an emotional story and they respond with a similar story. F*****g no! I know they are trying to make me feel connected, but it comes off as one-upmanship. Validate my emotions instead.


Kinda specific but if a guy tries to get pass me and puts his hand on my lower back. I get that he might have good intentions and doesn't want to bump into me but having a stranger make any form of physical contact instantly makes me feel like I'm in danger

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My love language for others is gift giving. But my love language to get from others is words of affirmation and physical touch.

I've explained this and no one gets it. I dont want gifts I want you to make me feel special by telling me what I mean to you.( because I feel I always do that)


I agree with the generic gifts thing.

Also, washing the dishes. I don't know why a couple guys I've dated have washed the dishes... but there's always food crusted/chunks of visible food, oil, completely missed spots etc so I end up having to re-wash them. My current boyfriend does this.

One of my ex's put a downpayment on a custom wedding ring after I told him I would never be interested in wearing one and that I don't like diamonds. Surprise surprise, the guy who did this turned out to be crazy, we hadn't even been dating a year, all red flags.


Well for me if the thoughtful thing has a clear intention or I need to praise them an awful lot afterwards it just makes me feel worse.

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I always split the check on first dates and I hate that I have to argue with them! It’s thoughtful that you’d want to pay for me but I’d prefer to pay for myself. Usually they’ll settle with me buying drinks and they’ll buy food but it’s frustrating and looks weird in restaurants.


Offering to do something to help around the house but then half as*ing it. I’d have rather honestly just done it by myself than have to get frustrated and finish it


Reassuring or encouraging me about something, in an attempt to make me "appreciate" their words, when in reality I don't need reassurance or encouragement in that department at all.


Getting you gifts out of nowhere, definitely. Especially when there’s no holiday or occasion. Once in a rrreal blue moon is fine but if it’s often, it seems really kiss-a*s. Like they have an ulterior motive or that they’re really eager to keep you and that’s definitely a turn off.


When you tell them you want peace to work on yourself and they keep calling or texting you cause they say it helps them to cope with the separation. No you're still just thinking about yourself and your needs.


My husband will buy me things that I mention I want or need, but always completely misses the mark.

He once bought me a pair of shorts that were 6 sizes too big, and not at all like anything I would ever wear.


I’ve been irritated at a buddy of mine for something he recently did to try to be nice…I guess it’s a form of gatekeeping where he’s trying to protect me from myself but he’s actually smothering communication? I’m recently out of an abusive relationship and I noticed that I have kind of an abusive type, which freaked me out. So I’ve been researching - and I’m a trained researcher with a doctoral degree - and I’ve been thinking about this for a couple months. I started telling him about my findings and what I’ve learned about myself, and he just ignored my content - *repeatedly* - to tell me to stop victim blaming. That my exes are all a******s, that I shouldn’t be blaming myself, that I shouldn’t poison my good nature by being overly suspicious, etc. I get that he was trying to protect me somehow, but I was adamantly saying “I am not doing that, I am investigating what has caused me to fall into this kind of problem repeatedly so I can avoid it in the future.” It was SO aggravating. He also kept denying my research had any efficacy after citing dictionary terms to me. So I was like “my ex had narcissistic traits” and he was like “I don’t think he did, but I’m not that familiar with it, but let me check *the dictionary*. Yes, I’m right.” ARE YOU KIDDING ME. ?


Going easy on us, it makes us feel looked down upon.


Public displays maybe.


Writing love letters or poems with generic Googled love quotes.


Playing devil's advocate to give me perspective on different scenarios. Just makes me retract and annoyed.