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Old 20-08-2011, 16:34   #61
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

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Originally Posted by Sonadora305 View Post
I bought a boat of my own after crewing for others and loving it. I've been living aboard for the last year and a half and learning a great deal about what comfort and pleasure mean to me and learning that comfort becomes relative! If you love sailing, but are anxious in higher wind, definitely take sailing lessons. The straight couples who sail happily and often in our yacht club all have the woman on the tiller and the man trimming. If you're steering, you can decide how much you want to heel. Trimming sails requires some strength (not more than the average middle aged woman can handle) but the wheel/tiller requires someone who is very aware and alert. Also, being in charge of steering gives you a sense of control over the situation that lessens anxiety.
At the end of the day, ask yourself- am I enjoying this? If you're not, then don't force yourself. It's supposed to be fun-this isn't Dunkirk-don't do something you hate. If you're not at the helm at least half the time, its too much like riding on the back of a motorcycle. All the risk and half the fun. If your guy really loves sailing, and it's your boat too, then you'll both be happier sharing the skipper duties. You can be the upwind skip, he can handle downwind. Take ownership of the boat and the sport - or cheer him on from shore while you do something you do enjoy. The shorter answer would be: macho women don't do anything they don't want to! Wimps stay onboard when they're not comfortable. Good luck- stay true to yourself!
Welcome to the Forum.
Good first post
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Old 20-08-2011, 16:39   #62
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

welcome sonadora. smooth sailing.
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Old 20-08-2011, 17:05   #63
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

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I want some ladies perspectives. I am really sad that I have been planning to sail with my partner on our lovely boat and it's not turning out like I thought. When we first bought it, we had some "pleasant" sails and I was getting into it. Then it was on the hard for a while and now that we have it back in the water, every time we go out, I get terrified. I loved it at first but now I am experiencing fear and intense discomfort. I am afraid to say I think I might hate this...

Sounds like I was exactly in the same boat [hehe] as you for a while. I did my first cruise with him (7 days of pleasant, warm, nice easy sailing) and then we left on The Trip. After we left the dock I started getting nervious and scared. I would get scared of the boat heeling, of waves slapping against the hull, of the map not being correct, of the depth being too shallow, of instruments not calibrated well, of the wind being too strong (20-25kn), of anchor not holding, of anchoring too close, too far, of the boat slamming into the waves, of the wind changing, of noises, of lack of noises, ... the list goes on and on. I was SCARED OF THE UNKNOWN. And how I hated it! I cried, I was even throwing up because of the fear. The only thing that prevented me from walking off was my stubbornness.
[I don't know what prevented my s.o. from not throwing me overboard]

The only way I was able to overcome it was by learning about EVERYTHING on the boat BY DOING IT by myself with no help from my s.o. Think: what would you do if noone else was on board? Ok, you will psych out, but what would you do after? Then do it. If you make a mistake, so be it. Fix it. Do it again. Practice. Gain confidence.

It would also help your mental state if you would have gotten into some extreme situations: after all you know that if the boat and you handled it, then anything less will be just fine. Not that I'm advising it, just stating that it would help your mental state.

Good luck!
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Old 20-08-2011, 18:52   #64
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

by going out and trying it, you may find you either hate it or you love it so much you want more. i am using it as fear of unknown keeps many from sailing, male or female. there is a lot of unknown stuff out there. big and little.
women have been trained for many decades to be dependent on male strength. we could go on about that for looooong time. isnt relevent. at all...we have strengths no one ever knew and it comes out in the sea-you will probably love it--allow yourself to do that.
guys dont have a patent on being jazzed by feeling nature in a sailboat. by using nature to go somewhere. is fun to make a cruising brick get down, as it were, and boogie in 60 kt winds. a big boat can handle it--so can a smaller one with good forethought.reef and run from shore. sail smart. learn everything and sail with many folks and learn learn learn.
i cheated--i learned from age 7 yrs. i have always soo loved the sea and being on it--sailing on it is devine. is a life there soo cool---tortoises, flying fish, dolphins..wow!!!! they play with you at sea--dolphins will play games and accompany you for distances playing with your boat. dancing with your boat's waves...focus on that part if something else bothers you-- look for the sea life to watch an d take pix of and that will relax you --is sooo beautiful in the sea.
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Old 20-08-2011, 19:22   #65
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

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by going out and trying it, you may find you either hate it or you love it so much you want more. i am using it as fear of unknown keeps many from sailing, male or female. there is a lot of unknown stuff out there. big and little.
women have been trained for many decades to be dependent on male strength. we could go on about that for looooong time. isnt relevent. at all...we have strengths no one ever knew and it comes out in the sea-you will probably love it--allow yourself to do that.
guys dont have a patent on being jazzed by feeling nature in a sailboat. by using nature to go somewhere. is fun to make a cruising brick get down, as it were, and boogie in 60 kt winds. a big boat can handle it--so can a smaller one with good forethought.reef and run from shore. sail smart. learn everything and sail with many folks and learn learn learn.
i cheated--i learned from age 7 yrs. i have always soo loved the sea and being on it--sailing on it is devine. is a life there soo cool---tortoises, flying fish, dolphins..wow!!!! they play with you at sea--dolphins will play games and accompany you for distances playing with your boat. dancing with your boat's waves...focus on that part if something else bothers you-- look for the sea life to watch an d take pix of and that will relax you --is sooo beautiful in the sea.
What!!??

Go wash your mouth out woman
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Old 20-08-2011, 19:54   #66
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

but we were--we have overcome that need--many havent as yet--
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Old 20-08-2011, 20:00   #67
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

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but we were--we have overcome that need--many havent as yet--
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Old 20-08-2011, 20:27   #68
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

I found out, after some "sharing" from my then wife that she was uncomfortable in blustery conditions.

I made new rules:
1> Put in another reef at about 5 kts less wind speed than you used to think was the time.
2> Be willing to heave-to for a rest. Very important.
3> Have an alternate course or destination as a fall back.
4> Never say anything like "don't be silly, this ain't nothing".

Took me some time to learn to adjust, but very glad I did.
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Old 21-08-2011, 00:58   #69
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

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I found out, after some "sharing" from my then wife that she was uncomfortable in blustery conditions.

I made new rules:
1> Put in another reef at about 5 kts less wind speed than you used to think was the time.
2> Be willing to heave-to for a rest. Very important.
3> Have an alternate course or destination as a fall back.
4> Never say anything like "don't be silly, this ain't nothing".

Took me some time to learn to adjust, but very glad I did.
+1 to all 4.

My s.o. added one more thing to this list [I think the most successful together with #1 ]:

5> I am responsible for the weather. I decide when we go and where we can get to. Of course I can consult him, but decision is mine.

At first we were going only in 16-20 kn from aft quarter . Then I realized that I wanted to get to places, the boat could handle it, and the fear diminished. It's been good as I'm now the resident weather expert on board

It's amazing what a little responsibility can do.
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Old 21-08-2011, 20:17   #70
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Re: Do You Have to Be 'Macho' to Get into this ?

I have helped people get over their fear of sailing.

#1 a sailboat wants to stay upright.

#2 Most sailboats will steer into the wind....I don't get into a lot of nautical JAR-GON with them at first.

#3 I put them at the tiller as quickly as possible so they have a sense of control

Just remember there are old sailors and bold sailors....there are FEW old 'n bold sailors.

#4 Find some women to sail with.........
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