Every Woman’s Guide To The Man Cold

every woman's guide to the man cold

To properly undertake the care and treatment of the man cold, an uninitiated wife must have a resource to guide her. Even the experienced woman needs a handy refresher. This is that resource – written for every woman’s education and reference

“Man cold” is the popular, yet misleading designation for a near-fatal wasting disease Click To Tweet“Man cold” is the popular, yet misleading designation for a near-fatal wasting disease distinctively associated with the Y chromosome. But it is not a “cold” at all. It’s a set of complex and incapacitating symptoms which render the sufferer completely dependent on a full-time caregiver. That’s you.


Although man cold symptoms vary slightly in severity among the male population, observation indicates an inversely proportional relationship to age. The younger the man, the acuter his sufferings. (I offer my own theory about this later.) Classic manifestations of the temporary, but life-threatening illness are as follows.

  • A collapse of dignity and self-respect. Your man will not wear pants for the duration (typically 4-5 days.) He will speak of his mother’s attentions to his adolescent bouts of the affliction with the regularity of an Alzheimer’s patient. And he will groan – audibly and consistently.
  • The assumption of the fetal position. Your man will be disposed to lie on his side with the most advantageous view of the bedroom television. Count on it.
  • Monophobia. Left alone in his condition, your man is anxious and needy. Sooooo needy.
  • Schizophrenic Appetite Disorder (SAD, and it is) First, he wants “just crackers and ginger ale. That’s all.” Nibbles one cracker and decides his taste buds are not working. “Literally, they’re NOT WORKING!” Visibly frightened, he suggests he needs Oreos and ice-cream. “Yes, mint chocolate chip ice-cream!” That will revive his withering taste buds. Be advised: Oreos and ice-cream are merely a gateway request to order him pizza.
  • Production of copious amounts of snot. The only legit and verifiable symptom of a man cold, he will display it for maximum effect.


There are three schools of thought regarding the appropriate protocol for treating the man cold.

The first option your mother-in-law favors. It calls for complete capitulation to his requests. After all, his discomfort is the male equivalent to childbirth. Such disability requires maximum effort directed toward his care and convalescence. It is here I note my previously alluded to theory of why older men exhibit slightly less acute symptoms: History teaches them this is not the option their wife is likely to select. So they don’t put as much effort into their prostrations.

The second option is to realize while it may be too late for your husband, you can still save yourself. You are not in danger of contracting the man cold. No woman ever has. But you are in danger of a substantial prison sentence if you snap on the man and poison him. Happened before.

So although running home to your mother’s is rightly rejected as a coping mechanism for normal marital conflict, it’s an accepted strategy when confronted with the plague that is the man cold. There’s a written provision for it somewhere.

The third option is a hybrid of the previous two. You may provide napkins, nourishment, and Ny-Quill. You can give him the television remote and a kiss on the forehead. And you can try not to roll your eyes until you’ve turned your back to him. That’s about all this option calls for and the one I favor myself. But that’s me.

A choice of treatment options for the man cold is good news for you. Choose wisely.

man cold

  • sam

    This is hysterical! I love it so much, I’m sharing it with the man in my life when I get home. Thank you for the comic relief 🙂

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      And it was fun to write! 😉

    • and you can never go wrong with the “motherly” approach to your husband 🙂

  • Jo

    Ha ha love this! Surely there is another option? Take yourself off for a spa break for 4 days to leave him to recover?!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      If one’s purse can handle that option, I’d say it’s a viable alternative, Jo!

  • Oh dear Lord I need to send this to my husband immediately! Why in the world are they all such babies when they get man colds? Although, I must admit, my MIL has very little sympathy for him either when he’s sick, she knows he’s impossible!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      It’s one of the world’s unsolvable mysteries, Kelly. 😉

  • I absolutely love this! First off, I can’t get over the picture, and secondly, why is every word of this so true?!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      I lucked out finding that picture! I love it too. Thanks, Carissa.

  • LOL!! The man cold. My husband was feeling down this weekend and had a 4 hour nap…..

  • Erica

    Too funny! My husband just had a bad cold for the last 2 weeks. He was the opposite. He kept insisting he was fine and NOT contagious (which he clearly was) and insisted on just hanging out with me like normal. And I wanted to stay as far away from his germs as possible!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      1000 bonus man points for your husband! 😉

  • This is so spot on that I know yours and my husband must be related. Hilarious!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      Ya never know! Glad you enjoyed it.

  • Rae

    You are sooo right. The last time he got sick I actually went on a last minute girls trip, left him at home with various medicines (which he didn’t even open!!!), soup and a case of water. I was honestly shocked that he survived on his own!!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      Oh my! ?

  • I am dealing with this right now, it started yesterday. He did go to church and to work today, but now it starts, hah. This is a fun yet accurate post.

  • I luckily don’t have too much experience with the man cold but some of my friends’ husbands are pathetic. This is such a funny guide!

  • my husband is amazingly different than most. He never gets a man cold, and barely complains when he has a real cold!

    • Alexandra T Armstrong

      Do NOT lose that man! And give him this: ?

  • This is too funny!!!

  • Nancy Kwang Canter

    LOL love the man cold. Thanks for reminding the world that this is a thing!

  • Kendra Canfield

    THIS! I too choose option three, because after all we do love them! However, I have been caught mid-eye roll!

  • haha this is hilarious and don’t you just love it?!

  • Ayanna

    This is too funny!! Option 3 is my go-to every time.

  • Candy Kage

    I just leave and go to work and let him deal on his own. He has learned that he will live over the years.

  • So funny! Fortunately, my husband is great even when he has a cold. He definitely needs to get more rest, but he really does try to still be helpful which I so appreciate!

    • Wife Sense

      Mary – your man is a unicorn among men. Never let him go! 😂