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Show ALL Forums  > Off Topic  > Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?      Home login  
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 poly_1der
Joined: 1/8/2006
Msg: 1
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?Page 1 of 3    (1, 2, 3)
I've never been very good at accepting unsolicited advice, but now that I've reached this ripe old age, I think I'm even worse. But here's the thing that really gets my goat: I'm 52 years old, and there are so many men 10 or even 20 years my junior who just INSIST on giving me advice on just about everything they think they have all figured out. I even had one man argue with me when I answered his "want MY advice?" with a "no, thank you". He said that *his mom* always told him he has very good advice, and that I was a fool not to accept it. So, not feeling like arguing over such a trivial thing, I told him to go ahead and tell me what he thought. Well, this was not really a problem for which I NEEDED any advice, it was really just a personal preference, and I'd already made up my mind about what to do. But when I told him that, he became furious because I wouldn't accept his "help".

I get the feeling that there are a lot of very controlling men out there, who become angry when they find themselves faced with someone who's capable of handling the vicissitudes of life without running for advice. I asked one man from whom I got that impression, "how do you think I managed to get by all these years without getting any advice from you?". The man had just turned 30, and was so full of advice on how I should live my life that I just didn't even want to meet him.

So my question is twofold. 1) how do you handle it when someone just feels the NEED to give unsolicited advice, even when you really don't need it? and 2) If you are one of these people who just thinks everyone would benefit from YOUR advice, why is it that you feel this way?

IS it just a means of trying to take control, or is it something else?
 poly_1der
Joined: 1/8/2006
Msg: 2
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 3:15:01 PM
UM....once again I forgot those ever important words, "at OUR age". I tried to delete the post to try again, but was unsuccessful, so please, just understand that I meant to add those words to the subject, eg. "unsolicited advice at our age...", OK? Since the subject matter has to do with younger people forcing their advice on someone much older, I do feel this is the right place for this topic.
 hartshaped
Joined: 6/22/2008
Msg: 3
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 3:40:22 PM
Since the death of my husband I have had unsolicited advice from the younger, older the neighbors, my friends, my enemies..... fact is at my age there are some who believe that I have no sense thus, I need the unsolicited advice. I never divulged what was going on in my life... they would seem to pick up that there were things they "knew" the answer for... from picking wall paint to new carpet to a new relationship I was in...

At first I wanted to give them my point...but I also found them to be very resistant to that. So, now, I simply smile...and forget that they are talking...lol

There will always be people who think they know how one should/could handle things...but until they walk my path, my shoes, and breathe for me, I will simply take what they say with that proverbial grain of salt. I do weigh what they say...but strangely 99.9% of the time. my way is the right way for me, whether it is unsolicited advice from the younger, the older etc etc etc..

 redarcangel
Joined: 1/12/2007
Msg: 4
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 4:16:08 PM
I have "no" real problem with unsolicited advice.. or constructive criticism.. as I love to learn.. and find different ways of dealing with (even potential) problems.

However.. when the advice is more of a "demand".. and the critisism.. is "uncontructive and critical".. then I have to chime in and say.. !

Enough of any "bad" thing.. is too much!

 heartnsoul51
Joined: 5/20/2008
Msg: 5
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 4:17:56 PM
oh yes! love advice, especially when it's unwanted, not required or asked for lol.

Well I guess we are all guilty of this at one time or another. It starts off I think, when we become parents and it seems to snowball (for some), from there. When I'm given 'unsolicited advice', I simply smile, thank them, then change the subject. It costs nothing to listen and no where is it written that I MUST follow and do, what was suggested.

Some people THRIVE on giving advice. You see that most evident here in the forums. Some dispense advice in almost every category posted. Perhaps this is a way of being noticed. I suppose it can be seen as a form of controlling others, or perhaps, it's more a case of....I can't get my own chit together, so let me see if I can 'fix' someone else. Either way, I wouldn't get too flustered over it. You waste more energy and valuable time getting stressed out by the small stuff. Save it for the more important things like...........Friday's coming and it's going to be 5 o'clock somewhere!!!!!
 arwen52
Joined: 3/13/2008
Msg: 6
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 4:30:10 PM
I try to accept it politely and graciously. People usually mean well and don't realize that they usually aren't being that helpful. If I don't want advice, then I don't present them with problems that they'll feel compelled to want to solve. I thank them, change the subject, and move on.
 AgelessWonder
Joined: 4/12/2006
Msg: 7
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 4:37:44 PM
I learned a long time ago when someone gives advice and I don't agree with them, I just smile and ignore it, and do my own thing.

I'm not one to talk about problems much, so I'm not affected one way or another about it.

I bought a new car recently and had lots of advice on what to buy and where, but did my own thing. JMO
 ForumFilly
Joined: 5/14/2008
Msg: 8
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 4:55:56 PM
Poly, it is amazing that we managed to even get to our advanced ages knowing as little as we do, much less do so successfully. I think the younger men try to force their opinions on us to prove they are as mature, intelligent and worldly as we are. They don't want to be thought of as 'kids', but rather as 'MEN'. By pushing their views on us, all they are doing is emphasizing their insecurities and their lack of maturity.
 breath~
Joined: 1/13/2008
Msg: 9
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 5:24:57 PM

I don't worry about it.
 Childlike Wonder
Joined: 10/21/2007
Msg: 10
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 6:05:41 PM
I usually say something along the lines of "I've got it under control" and then change the subject. I'm not impulsive in my decision making and I do research things that I am not sure of. I will ask for advice when I need it.
 Funny_Girl
Joined: 10/27/2005
Msg: 11
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 6:10:03 PM
I think when people offer advice like the OP mentions, it's because they want to be valuable to us. If we seem appreciative, regardless of how we take their advice, it meets their need and makes them feel important to us.
 pretty moon
Joined: 6/25/2008
Msg: 12
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 6:15:40 PM
LOL I love this post..........Some days I wonder how I manged to get to the age of 68 without all the advise given to me lately. And YIKES I live alone. However, do I get through the day?

Actually, people that know me well dont offer advise unless asked. Those that do think, for whatever reason, that they have valid advise for me ,I will take it all under advisement and do my own thing. Not to say I wont incorporate something they may have told me.


I admit that my grands know more about the computer than I do and I value what they have to say. But, when they try to advise me on how manners and morals have changed I DONT BUY IT and I let them know. Good manners never go out of style. At least not in my house.


PEACE
 peek~a~booo
Joined: 1/3/2007
Msg: 13
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 6:35:41 PM
see i am mirror opposite of that......i love hearing how other people solve and i love when they share there insight...cuz i have learned alot of different views and realize often that comes from a human's compassion requardless of the context to which they offer it.(i can't be offended by someones opinion if they can debate it...
I think when a person is passionate about an issue it gives you a glimmer into that human's compassion for others even if it is opposite of mine...cuz it gives me an option to polorize in mine own opinion more solid or refine it...if they can sell there theory to me i am open to hear why...often the difference is in there exposure to other stuff but i enjoy that and find i grow stronger in myself cuz of it.
I see it as a suggestion and feel no threat...my boundries are developed without the weakness of being offended by someone else's passion kinda...does that make scence...

i am not oversensitive and do not allow others opinions to enter my central core...learned skill...and i guess now it is no longer a skill but a habbit...
goodluck to folks who feel the need to complain about other humans caring enuff about them to say words to them...if those folks where not only trying to communicate and make you feel better than you need to not let them hurt you hun...
goodluck lil fish.
 Nordic33708
Joined: 11/11/2006
Msg: 14
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 6:51:11 PM

The man had just turned 30, and was so full of advice on how I should live my life that I just didn't even want to meet him.
I guess you're talking about people on this site? Or a similar site?
I used to get a lot of "advice" from men telling me that I shouldn't be looking for this or that or whatever when they didn't fit what I was looking for. I was told I should give older men a chance. Young men told me I should really go for them. I used to respond that if they felt they had to convince me about what I want, why would they want me in the first place? Wouldn't they want someone who wanted them from the get go and not someone whom they'd have to convince to meet them?
In addition I used to tell them that there would be no way in hell I'd meet a man who tried to tell me that he knew better than I what's good for me and not.

I don't think it's a control thing. I think it's just desperation. I don't know if you are talking about the same thing or not though. You are not giving any example of what it is they advise you on.

Sometimes when I play pool there are men who wants to give me advice. If they see that I'm going for one ball, they might point out that "that one is a better choice" or whatever. That really disturbs me. I ask if they do that to men as well when they play. They have no way of knowing my strategy when I play. I don't meddle in their play and they should stay out of mine.


If you are one of these people who just thinks everyone would benefit from YOUR advice, why is it that you feel this way?
Now, I'm not stupid so when a person I'm close to, like a boyfriend does that I know it could be because he wants to feel like he's helping out, sort of the man is stronger, should look out for, should help, and so forth. If it's not done in a way that's derrogatory I don't see any reason to get upset. If a man I don't even know does that....he better beware. LOL
 WackMC
Joined: 4/23/2008
Msg: 15
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 7:09:48 PM
UNsolicited goes UNheeded.
 cdn*guy
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 16
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 8:53:57 PM
As a mostly ‘go it my own way’ type of person, unsolicited advice doesn’t usually affect the things I do. But I’ve found out, over the years, that you just never know where you’ll pick up those ‘gems’ of information – yes, even from the young. So, as a rule, I usually reply to unsolicited advice with something like: “Thanks. I’ll keep it in mind.” And depending on the situation (and the advice), I either let it affect my decision-making or I just forget about it. Usually, when someone offers me a lot of bad advice they usually get the hint when they see that I don't follow any of it. But, I don’t usually let the fact that someone else thinks they are offering some good ideas affect me badly. I've always thought that the exchange of ideas with other human beings is a good thing.

But just my way of looking at it, of course ...

cdn guy
 Jazz-Fan
Joined: 5/3/2008
Msg: 17
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/16/2008 11:02:12 PM
If I'm ever in the (rare) position of giving or being asked for advice, I usually preface it with something like, "Your best bet is to either ignore my advice or do the opposite, as my advice is usually cr*p." In my experience, unsolicited-advice-givers tend to be insecure control freaks who take themselves far too seriously.
 kornbluth
Joined: 12/25/2006
Msg: 18
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 2:53:45 AM

I think when people offer advice like the OP mentions, it's because they want to be valuable to us.

Funny Girl is right. That's what I thought I was doing, long ago when I was young and dumb. But at "our" age I find that what most people "think" has never done me much good, and that it's too late to say what I think.

There was famous newspaper-advice columnist who was highly esteemed as an authority on marriage. She oughtta be; she was married 4 or 5 times and had lots of money. She also had 3 or 4 divorces. And at the other extreme, I guess we still have marriage counselers who are celibate priests. So there's always plenty "advice" to pick from. I try not to add to the noise. However, sometimes I do have to tell some other old farts "Look, if you want to do this-that-the other, you nust get on the Internet."
 MacKevinized
Joined: 2/15/2006
Msg: 19
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 4:27:12 AM

UM....once again I forgot those ever important words, "at OUR age". I tried to delete the post to try again, but was unsuccessful, so please, just understand that I meant to add those words to the subject, eg. "unsolicited advice at our age..."


This statement could have been said just as easily from a teenager as most of them hate getting advise too, A teen with enough smarts to recognize they just made an error but then needs to justify that error as OK.

So, if you want my advise on not wanting advise, I suggest you just cut them off at the knees (metaphorically).
Your never going to change someone with a penchant for playing dear Abby, but you can change yourself. You see, asking for advise (like this thread) draws the advise givers (like me) to thinking you NEED advise and this giving and taking of advise becomes a form of foreplay. When you cut them off from being able to give advise you're telling them they're not getting laid.

My experience has been people that seek to much advise are not really seeking advise but looking for a way to discredit the advise given based on some inner feelings of superiority. By having me give advise and then inevitably fail, they have someone other than themselves to blame.

That's one of the reasons I give really stupid advise, then I can just grin when someone actually takes it and acts on it. When they come back to blame and admonish me for the bad advise, I can just say "I knew it was stupid when I gave it you, it was your choice to follow a stupid idea."

Don't go off thinking I'm against giving advise as I might suggest you see a doctor or get a lawyer when you need but mostly the advise I tend to implore has the theme 'think for yourself'.
 rearguard*2
Joined: 2/8/2008
Msg: 20
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Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 5:17:30 AM
I believe that for most people, communication is a two way street. People of all ages offer unsolicited advice and watch for a reaction from the object of their conversation. While they certainly go into a conversation believing that they know what they are talking about, they may or may not leave the conversation with the same feelings. If you respond with your own perspective, some of them will learn from you, most will at least appreciate in some small way that their perspective may not be entirely complete, and a few will not relate at all to what you say.

I think of unsolicited advice as the offer of a theory based on personal experience. I usually listen, then respond with my view. I got a lot of unsolicited advice from my own teenage children at one point, and after a while they began telling me that they appreciated my own perspective on things.

Why should things change with older kids? Forty-something people I think are the worst for thinking they have it all figured out. I know that I was horrible at that age, having been more or less successful in everything in my life at the time. Now I just look at it as another phase of growing up.
 ~charmed~
Joined: 4/9/2008
Msg: 21
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 5:27:19 AM
I usually just nod my head, smile and listen... then I do it how I want to...

Seems to work for me... but this is just my advice. So nod your head and smile!

~Charmed~
 gemstar2000
Joined: 5/10/2008
Msg: 22
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 7:55:58 AM
I don't mind a little constructive criticism, or advice on how to handle a situation, from someone I've confided in. Sometimes, it's good to see things from someone else's point of view.

However, I agree with several of the other posters.....if someone thinks they can demand that I change my likes or dislikes to suit their needs, they're dreamin'.
 Sapphireeyes
Joined: 1/13/2008
Msg: 23
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 8:54:29 AM
Oh wow I seem to differ from most of yall. I dont think age has anything to do with intelligence or that cause I am older that someone younger might not be able to prompt me in a good direction. I value my friends, I have several from 21 up who will say things that makes me go...dang they are right glad I listened to them. Mostly on perception issues vs stupid things like pay your bills on the due date to avoid late charges ..DOH!

I have found listening to people you like can expand your horizons, they also come to me and ask me my advice on things so I would say it is cause there is mutual respect...that is why we are friends.

Now if it is some guy younger than me trying to score brownie points over something then I see that as a guy just trying to make conversation ...if he gets upset that I dont agree with him I see that as a guy who doesnt like when someone has their own set of standards and suggest that we arent a good match.

I guess I would say if more than one person is offering you advice on something maybe they have a different perception than you about it and feel that they are seeing something that you didnt...just being helpful.
 WindRoper
Joined: 7/24/2007
Msg: 24
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 9:23:56 AM
I feel compelled to chime in that this seems to be an age thing. The older we get and more experience we have to draw upon, some of us offer more and more unsolicited advice. Guilty as charged.
When others do it to me and I get aggravated enough I offer them "a nice warm cup of STFU."
 Paumanok
Joined: 6/15/2008
Msg: 25
Unsolicited advice...how do you handle it?
Posted: 7/17/2008 9:24:17 AM
I listen to what they have to say. Then I say: "That would work." Then I smile. Then I change the subject or end the conversation. If they seem sincere and helpful I might ask them to continue, and if they get to the point where what they started out saying led to something that is obviously not making sense anymore, I crack a joke. People sometimes try to advise you as a way of making sense for themselves. Listening doesn't take me that far out of my way. And guess what? Once in a while I learn something new and useful, even if it is only how other people see things.
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