Thursday, December 8, 2022


Woman RVer learning the ropes annoyed with “over-helpful” men


RV Shrink

Dear RV Shrink:
I am trying to learn everything about our RV just in case my husband keels over one day and I have to get this monster (RV) home. I seldom drive, dump the holding tanks or fill with water. Those are the things I have been practicing.

The problem is there are always men standing around telling me what I am doing wrong before I even get a chance to figure things out on my own. If I hear “righty tighty, lefty loosey” one more time, I’m going to give someone a “dirty swirly”!

Am I being too thin-skinned? I just want some space to make my own mistakes and learn from experience. —RVing woman in Woodward

Dear RVing woman:
Good for you. I think everyone on board should know everything about the ship. If the Captain falls overboard, the First Mate can still get the ship back to port.

I’m thinking most people that give advice, whether asked for or not, mean well. You will have to make your own judgment calls on where your advice is coming from and how it’s delivered.

But I agree with learning from experience. These are mostly simple chores but repetitive practice makes perfect. Various dump stations, water facilities and road conditions call for different approaches to the same procedures. It is important to experience them all.

Working as a husband/wife team is very important – especially when backing into a site. Remember, the helpful person that might come over to help back you in has nothing invested.

If someone was trying to tell me how to dump my rig, I would just step aside and ask them to show me. The “dirty swirly” sounds like a bad idea. I’m sure you could be charged with some kind of brown collar crime. —Keep Smilin’, Richard Mallery a.k.a. Dr. R.V. Shrink

Can’t get enough of the Shrink? Read his e-book: Dr. R.V. Shrink: Everything you ever wanted to know about the RV Lifestyle but were afraid to ask or check out his other e-books.


Did you enjoy this article?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Mr nice guy!
2 years ago

This post makes me want to not help the next female I see having issues. Figure it out on your own and maybe break something. Maybe costing you valuable time and money, why do I care. This was my thought when I first saw the post, however; I do understand wanting to figure it out so if the situation calls for it, you are prepaired. I wish everyone was forward thinking enough as the original poster is. I have taught my wife how to set up, tear down, hookup and drive our rig. Maybe have your husband watching you while you learn so everyone knows you are not alone and possibly needing help would alevate some of your frustrations. I would hope that anyone who has given you assistance in the past was only attempting to help instead of belittling you. I hope this reads as a helpful post as it is intended.

Liz Pipes
3 years ago

I’m never offended when someone offers help. I think they may know something I don’t and I’ll learn a helpful tip. Most people mean well when they’re trying to help.

Ron Cravey
3 years ago

Since you are doing these things “just in case my husband keels over one day and I have to get this monster (RV) home,” maybe you have learned that if the worst happens, there will plenty of people around to help you out. Maybe you should stop learning those things and depend on help if and when you need it.

Randy Shrimplin
3 years ago

In my opinion, you have delivered both good and bad advice. I agree, no dirty swirly’s but, I would NEVER let anyone touch my RV for the same reason you stated in helping back up. Also, most people that give advice, while well intentioned, is just a likely to be wrong as it is right. Just ignore them! They will go away.
Now, if they get out the video cam and mention Youtube, you might want to rethink your next move, to avoid giving yourself a dirty swirly!

3 years ago

Absolutely. There is as much bad advice as there is good. I love it when a part-time RVer who “knows it all” tells this 13-year full-time boondocking RV veteran how to do things the best way. Lots of that same idiotic advice on many forums.