Whether you consider it a fictional pop culture phenomenon or the most quintessential keys to life, odds are, you are well aware of the existence of the “bro code”. Although these things were typically not disclosed freely (and especially in mixed company), thanks to the world wide web, our ol’ friend, Barney (from HIMYM), and of course, MTV, this once hidden code is now public information. Much to the dismay of men everywhere, women are now capable of reading the so-called “secret code” of the male world and we are certainly having our way with it.
That said, taking a page from American politics, I am going to critique and impose my will on a demographic of people that I only relatively relate to and mildly understand. Although men obviously have the right to think and behave in accordance with any code they wish, I feel it’s my womanly duty to shed life on some of the more nonsensical parts of this so-called code. Especially as it pertains to dealing with women, some of you will need a few tips if you ever plan to be able to relate to or have a functional relationship with a member of the opposite sex. Indeed, actions such as smoking cigars and pretending to be fanatical about sports can work to your detriment when trying to land a suitable mate. That said, the following is an overview of 8 bro codes you should never break for her as well as 7 that you definitely should.
15. Never Divulge A Bro’s Bedroom Escapades
First and foremost, no matter how much you like a girl, you should never give up too much information about your bros. Although I do not necessarily agree with the motive behind it (deception), I do agree that someone else’s sexual history should never be the topic of discussion. Moreover, some women (very few, of course) are very manipulative when it comes to gathering intel on a man, either for themselves or for a girlfriend. Giving up a bro’s sexual history could backfire majorly as you never truly know why a woman is asking and no matter what she says, “just curious” is not a real answer. Either way, hopefully, your bro is honest enough to tell her himself, but that is a decision that only he can make.
14. Break The “A Bro Can’t Wear Pink” Rule
In addition to that, wearing pink is certainly a section of the bro code fit for violation. Firstly, women like to dress their men. If she purchases you a pink button-down shirt to match the (lame) pocket square and tie she bought you, you will wear it and you will like it! No, seriously, once you step out in an outfit picked out by your woman, you will likely see that women also judge men based on appearances. If your woman has a good sense of style, you will immediately garner more attention from other women. This means, if you are still playing the field or when you return to it, you will be decked out in a new wardrobe cherry-picked by one of our own. That is some serious mojo right there! Moreover, have you heard of breast cancer awareness month?! Seriously, as much as men love boobs, you should all be dressed in pink from head to toe, and waving a bright pink flag from October 1st to the 31st. And might I add, men actually look bad a** in pink! I don’t know, it’s just something about being secure enough in your masculinity to skirt the gender norms that gets us going.
13. A Bro Never Punches Another Bro In The Groin
Ugh. Does this really need to be said? OK, for the love of all that is holy, please don’t groin punch your bros! We know you get some type of sick thrill out of kicking the crap out of each other, (but it’s probably similar to the thrill many women get out of befriending and backbiting their enemies) however, the groin is an area that should be off limits for an array of reasons. Firstly, it looks like it stings pretty bad. I mean, we women definitely go through our fair share of pain but there is no womanly part or appendage that can bring us to our knees from one light punch alone. Moreover, have you heard of kids?! Yeah, that might not be in your plans anytime in the near future, but, if you spend your entire 20s playing human handball with your bros, don’t be alarmed by your low, sluggish sperm count later in life.
12. You Can Never Say A Bro’s GF Is Hot
Well, this one can be a bit tricky. On the one hand, you may actually have the kind of bro who prefers that his friends comment on his girlfriend’s level of hotness. In fact, he may literally look you in the eye and ask you, “How hot is she?!”. Don’t fall for it. Yes, it does qualify as a form of male bonding for men to discuss a woman’s level of attraction. However, in time, commenting on your bro’s girlfriend can have the opposite effect. Think of it this way, more often than not, when you meet a woman, no matter how much you like them, your original intention isn’t to get married. Therefore, it is more likely than not that when you introduce your bro to your latest love interest, you assume that she will only be around temporarily. However, you never know just how long that might turn out to be. In the case in which it turns into a full-blown relationship, you will then have to deal with seeing your bro with a woman that he knows you would be dating if you’d only had the chance.
11. Sometimes, You CAN Hook Up With A Bro’s Ex
Now, this one may be a bit controversial. Nevertheless, give this one some serious thought. The average young man is not dating with the intent of finding a life partner. Quite the contrary, these days, you’re lucky to last a season let alone a lifetime. Moreover, it is becoming increasingly acceptable for women to be openly sexual and also participate in the “hook-up culture”. Either way, especially in the case in which you live in a small town, or there aren’t very many women that you and your bros deem “dateable” in your area, not hooking up with exes can be next to impossible. However, to be clear, this is still within restriction. For instance, the love of your bro’s life who broke his heart into a million pieces is just off limits forever. However, if you think that cute little waitress he fooled around with for a few weeks, five years ago might be the one. You should go after her! Indeed, hooking up is vastly different from lovemaking. In the case that you believe that this woman could be “the one”, some random hook-up that your bro hardly remembers shouldn’t be your reason for avoiding it.
10. Break The “No Women-Bros” Rule
There is nothing in the bylaws that state that women can’t be bros. Quite the contrary (and it I do say so myself) some women are among the best bros you can find. While many men seem to believe that women are too sentimental and thus are incapable of living by “the code”, this obviously couldn’t be farther from the case. In fact, in an age in which gender roles are becoming increasingly convoluted, you may actually have male bros that are more sensitive than your female ones. Either way, sensitivity is no measure of someone’s ability to be a bro. She just may shed a tear here and there and occasionally have an uncontrollable urge to clean the man cave, but other than that, you should be pretty good to go!
9. Never Break The “No Name Tattoos” Rule
A bro should never allow another bro to get a name tattoo. Although many seem to believe that branding another person’s name on your body is a method of solidifying a relationship, that couldn’t be further from the case. In fact, more often than not, getting a tattoo of someone else’s name seems to serve as a painful sign of the imminent end of a relationship. Listen, no matter how much your bro may love a girl and/or tattoos, do not let him do this! Just remind him of how difficult it might be to hook up with new chicks with your ex’s name sprawled across your chest. And if that doesn’t work, also let him know that you definitely will not loan him the money required for its subsequent removal.
8. Break The Bachelor Party “Healing” Ritual
It is said that a bro must try to “cure” another bro who comes down with a case of fidelity by throwing him a bachelor party. While I am not exactly against bachelor parties, I am against the notion that they should be used to “cure” a man from wanting to get married and be faithful. I am all for having a little fun, but if you believe you have found “the one” you should easily be able to keep your paws off other women. Given that it has long since been proven that many men cheat on their women at these bachelor parties, either these men are not getting ready or they are folding to the pressure of their bros. You should want your bro to be happy. If he wants to cheat on his fiancé or wife, he will. You should not be the driving force behind him cheating. And for the men who are buckling under pressure, learn to stand up for the woman you love before you end up being a permanent fixture in the man cave!
7. Never Break The ‘Devil’s Three-Way’ Rule
OK, so there’s no need to get too specific, but if you aren’t familiar with this term, let’s just say this cookout involves twice as many sausages as it does hamburger patties… Either way, if you’re lucky enough to find a woman to go along with this, one would hope that she is a woman that both of you find attractive. In that case, and unless you’re into guys as well (not that there’s anything wrong with that) then all of your attention should be on the woman. You should do your best to avoid looking in your bro’s general direction, much less, making direct eye contact. Can you imagine the awkward turn that relationship will take once you can say you’ve seen each other’s sex faces?! That level of intimacy far exceeds the parameters of a bromance…
6. Break The “Bros Before…” Rule
Lastly, bros before…uh, women has been a long saying. However, as candidly pointed out on the show, The Big Bang Theory, this saying takes on all new meaning when the woman is your sister. Many women are someone’s sister, so if you are truly respecting some sort of code then women should be treated with respect rather than being disregarded based on some misogynistic code. Moreover, given that your wife is often the one who actually takes care of you (in more ways than one) you will likely have a much more fulfilling relationship with the right woman than you would with any of your bros. This is not to say that you should completely abandon your bros once you get serious with a woman. However, she certainly shouldn’t be likened to a streetwalker and she should obviously, at times, come before your bros.
5. Never Reveal Sporting Events Scores
Lastly, while I do not necessarily agree that all bros must love sports, I do agree that bros should show respect for the interests of those who do. We’re all a bit fanatical about something. And no matter if it is something that interests you or not, you should respect the boundaries created by your bros with respect to their hobbies and interests. That is to say, just because you either don’t enjoy sports or don’t take them seriously doesn’t give you the right to ruin the experience for others. If you happen to be viewing a game from a sport that you know your bro enjoys, be sure to ask him if he wants to know the score before just blurting it out. It may sound minuscule, but some men and women literally plan their whole day around making time to watch a particular game. Ignoring their wishes to not hear any details about the game will not only ruin their day, it could temporarily ruin your friendship.
4. Break The Cigar Smoking Rule
First and foremost, I do not agree with the notion that all bros must partake in cigar smoking and pretend to be knowledgeable and/or interested in them. It’s one thing if you simply love cigars and use them to relax and unwind. It’s quite another if you find them disgusting and are only participating so as to not violate the code. Cigar smoking is considered a disgusting habit to some, and you actually might be one of them. Can you imagine how you felt if you spotted your dream girls amidst a cloud of putrid cigar smoke and, between her coughing and gagging, all she can manage to choke out is “Yuck!”? Not always the best thing to just go along with everything. I’m just sayin’…
3. Break The Rule On Pretending To Care About Sports
In addition to that, I am almost very much against the notion that “real men” must watch and become enthralled by pro sports. While some of the gender norms have some validity, most of them are simply customs that we as a culture have adapted to over time. Not liking pro sports doesn’t make you any less manly than it makes women more manly for enjoying them as well. Pro sports are an acquired taste. Either you love them or you really don’t. For the bros forcing themselves to appear interested, you will spend countless, mind-numbing hours watching and discussing a topic that you find tedious at best. Moreover, given that women are typically less interested in sports, you will find that you may relate better to your woman or women based on this fact alone. Just say no, bro! Your real friends will respect you for it.
2. Never Let A Bro Go On A Blind Date Without Checking Her Out First
There are no two ways about it, you should definitely help out your bro by checking out his blind dates. Despite the fact that I may not agree with being overly judgmental based on appearances alone, I do freely acknowledge that this is the route taken by the vast majority of society. That said, blind dates are the worst. Men hate them. Women hate them. But we all keep going on the off chance that we’ll finally find the perfect person. Your bros know the type of women you’re attracted to. They should easily be able to size up a potential love interest and give you the heads up. To be clear, this doesn’t exonerate you from having to face this woman. However, if she’s just not your type, you may simply opt to fake an emergency before you even show up. For instance, you could call her from the car and tell her that you’re on the way, but one of your bros just called you and you have to go to the emergency room. That way, you can show up, kiss her on the cheek, have a quick drink, bid her adieu, without her ever batting an eyelash. No, this isn’t a preferable situation for anyone, but rejecting a woman over her appearance is harsh enough. This is one of those situations in which a little white lie could save all parties involved.
1. Break The “Bros Have To Know How To Drive Stick” Rule
OK, let’s be serious for a moment. Whether you view the bro code as gospel or simple entertainment, why do men think they have to pretend to be such good drivers. In fact, despite the longstanding joke that women are the worst drivers ever, studies have actually shown that men are much worse drivers for a few reasons. On the one hand, yes, it is true that women tend to have minor fender benders. However, 80% of serious car crashes are caused by men, and women are 27% less likely to actually cause the accident. This means men aren’t as good at driving as they believe. Listen, we don’t care about your level of skill behind the wheel. We just want to get home in one piece! If you can drive stick (or even automatic) that is nothing to hide. Some of us are excellent drivers. (Disclaimer: I am definitely not such a woman).