Mansplain is an interesting term that has been added recently to the Oxford, Merriam-Webster, and Cambridge dictionaries.

Here is the definition as per Oxford.

(of a man) explain (something) to someone, typically a woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronizing.

I ask for an alternative as this act/practice is fairly common and happens regardless of gender at the giving as well as the receiving end.

  • 1
    Basically, you seem to want terms for the idiom "talk down to".
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 18, 2018 at 22:59
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    What's wrong with condescending or patronizing?
    – user252684
    Apr 18, 2018 at 23:07
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    The whole point of the term is to express gender animosity/strife. It's empty without that. You could always invent a gender neutral term e.g. "spousesplain" Apr 18, 2018 at 23:13
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    @tr_quest so are you looking for something that has the gender relation or not? If not, why don't the suggested talk down to, condescending and patronising fit?
    – JJJ
    Apr 18, 2018 at 23:31
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    Patronize is good – yet it is not gender-neutral. Apr 19, 2018 at 2:41

1 Answer 1


I believe condescend a gender-neutral way to substitute mansplain; I think it is also a much more appropriate and professional word, and far less loaded. (While modern writers and speakers use condescend primarily as an adjective, it is more versatile than that!)

"You see, Terry," condescended Pat, "it's really just basic math – you know, like one plus one equals two?"

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