worker sitting at table speaking with caption 'one thing I've learned from dealing with the old white men at my work' (l) worker sitting at table speaking with caption 'is that you can tell them the solution a thousand times' (c) worker sitting at table speaking with caption 'and they will not listen to you unless they hear it come out of their mouth' (r)

@tinadangerbelcher/TikTok Remix by Caterina Cox

‘It’s like talking to preschoolers’: Woman says men in workplace only hear ideas if it comes out of their own mouth

‘Oh, but you have to make them feel like it’s original too, otherwise they’ll ask why you didn’t think of that.’


Brooke Sjoberg


A woman’s story about a male co-worker who did not understand why she could not complete a task is resonating with viewers who have similar experiences with weaponized incompetence in the workplace.

In her TikTok which has drawn over 1.4 million views as of Friday, user @tinadangerbelcher shares the story of George, her co-worker who has asked her to complete a task that only he or other co-workers in the office can do.

“You can tell them the solution a thousand times ’til you’re blue in the face, and they will not listen to you unless they hear it come out of their mouth as if it’s their own idea,” she says in the video.

@tinadangerbelcher im just a small dumb woman 🥺 #womenintheworkplace #corporatelife #workhumor #talesfromtechsupport ♬ original sound – canadian kels 🌾

She goes on to detail a conversation she had repeatedly with her male co-workers, in which she is asked to do something that only they can do, as her name is not on the accounts needed to complete the task.

Ultimately, to get her co-worker to take the lead on the task that she did not have the capability to do, she says she pretended to be helpless. Her co-worker then allegedly suggested that one of the employees who could complete the task do it.

“What an idea George, a hero amongst men,” she says.

The Daily Dot reached out to @tinadangerbelcher via comment on the video as other methods of contact were not available.

Several viewers shared that they endure similar circumstances at their jobs, where male co-workers will not listen to what they are saying unless they explain it in a certain manner or use voices akin to that of a preschool teacher.

“It’s like talking to preschoolers,” one commenter wrote. “You have to ask leading questions and pretend *you* are the one that’s confused.”

“This is a common customer support technique, ask specific questions to guide towards a solution they think they came up with alllll by themselves lol,” another user shared.

“Easiest way to get them to do anything is ask them to ‘help’ you instead of telling them to do it,” one viewer said. “Amazing how fast it gets done.”

Others shared instances of having their ideas, input, or requests stolen and ignored by male co-workers.

“My boss has for years told me all his amazing ideas,” one commenter wrote. “The same ideas I told him days earlier. It’s exhausting.”

“Once I suggested how to save a ton of money on a project, everyone ignored me,” another viewer wrote. “Some man said it weeks later and got it as a bonus.”

“When they finally have this brilliant revelation moment, give them full side eye and then say ‘yes, exactly like I’ve been saying for 6 days in a row,’” a commenter wrote.

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