Nag: The Word Men Use to Control Women

5 min readAug 8, 2018

Synonyms for nag: shrew, harpy, tormentor, heckler, provoker.

Nag is derived from a Scandinavian source meaning to gnaw, bite at and complain.’

“Don’t be such a nag.” The term makes me cringe and want to cry. No one wants to be a nag.

A nag is an irritating person, who is constantly scolding and criticizing others. A nag is someone who is persistently annoying.

Annoying? Persistently annoying? What a punch to the gut.

I use to do anything and everything possible to be not be called this forbidden word.

It is not sexy to be a nag.

I wanted to be the cool, alluring, easy-going woman in a man’s life. The woman who was game for anything and threw caution to the wind.

  • Another boy’s night out? Have fun and forget about the budget, blow it all!
  • Dirty socks creating a pyramid on the floor? Don’t sweat it, I got ‘em!
  • Forgot to pick me up from the airport? That’s what cabs are for, you keep sleeping.

Women will do anything to not be labelled a nag, usually to their own detriment.

It is a word society has taught us that we do not want to be. Men have also been taught to associate this term to women, when they want anything from them: a changed behaviour, a favour or just common courtesy.

It is a word used to control women to prevent them from asking for what they want, demanding (reasonable) change or expecting men to live up to their end of the bargain.

  • It makes you agreeable to settling.
  • It makes you silent and dismissive, to avoid negative labelling.
  • It makes you a shell of a person, to ensure that your exterior fits the societal moulds we want to be associated with.

Women want to be smart, sexy, successful, caring, funny…




I write about issues that are near and dear to my heart, with the hope that my stories, experiences, and struggles may empower others.