As Hilary Clinton recently pointed out, “I’m not shouting, it’s just when women talk, some people think we’re shouting.” Not being taken seriously on the sole basis of your gender is exhausting, especially when so many men have no concept of the varying levels of female volume. A straightforward delivery does not a shriek make. So how do we get our point across without risking being mistaken for a shouter? That professional indoor voice you were already speaking in just won’t work, so we gathered some other (not yelling) speaking strategies!
In A Demon-Child Whisper
He parks like a douche, but tells you you’re overreacting about not being able to get into your assigned spot. Take a breath. Zero in on his eyes. Tilt your chin down. Channel Esther from The Orphan and summon the power of the underworld as you slowly murmur, “I am not yelling.” He’ll drop the yelling thing fast and you’ll appear composed, rather than “overly emotional”.
In A Jessica-Jones-Being-Mind-Controlled-by-Kilgrave Smile
Ladies, accept for a moment that maybe they’re right and we DO need to smile more. Just keep that grin glued on at least a few mindless hours to prove your point. Walk around the office all day repeating, “I’m not yelling,” through fully showcased teeth and men will see how happy and calm you are. Remember, they’ll refer to you in some extreme regardless, so you might as well look pretty!
In a John F. Kennedy Impression
Men love JFK! He was a president, had boats, and killed it with the ladies. Stating your case in this old-money Massachusetts dialect is a surefire win. Fighting workplace gender politics should be more fun, so go ahead and tell ‘em, “I…am nawt…a yelluh.”
In an 80s Power Suit
Perhaps a big reason why men have trouble accepting our authority is because we allowed shoulder-padded blazers to die. They give you man shoulders, so men will be so distracted by trying to figure out if you’re trying to be a man that they won’t even think of labeling you with their usual sexist remarks about your “tone”. They’ll probably have to come up with some homophobia-based judgments instead.
In the Cry of a Banshee
Ah fuck it, just let all hell break loose. If he already thought you were yelling, go on and show him what yelling is with this demonic cry. He’ll be too scared to call you out for yelling now!
Through this fun array of strategies, we can end tone-policing and get back to what’s really important—finding ways to channel your acting class exercises at work!