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AMY KIRK: Lead Cow Syndrome affects some women

In every cow herd there is at least one, if not more than one lead cow. The same could be said — and has been said in our car before — about certain women on the road or in a crowd with "lead cow" syndrome.

Being heavily tailgated while driving somewhere then passed by an impatient, eager-to-be-in-front woman driver that seems insistent on being ahead of other cars could be categorized as a lead cow. If they aren't leading the way, they want to be.

In a herd, lead cows are the ones that always end up in front, leading the others when being trailed from place to place. A good lead cow has been in the herd a long time and knows the trail route from having traveled it many times before and will lead the herd in the right direction, making trailing cows easier and less stressful. There are also lead cows that are obstinate toward any attempts at being steered in a direction they aren't interested in going. These lead cow types disrupt cow-moving harmony which is not an admirable character trait in a cow. Most lead cows are good cows, but being dubbed as a "lead cow," is not considered a positive attribute in a woman.

Stubborn lead cows aren't very popular with ranch families when they try to go their own way. Dealing with cows that are not fond of cooperating when being trailed can be a real pain in the hiney because the rest of the herd follows behind them, creating chaos in getting the herd headed in the right direction or kept together. When a lead cow doesn't lead effectively, she makes the process of getting cows moved from one place to another more work. Such cows could be new to the herd, unfamiliar with the trail, or the lead cow of someone else's herd accidentally mixed up with ours. Ironically, these bossy cows would be known as bull-headed in the human world.

When we're talking about similarly behaved women, there's a difference between women leaders and women lead cows. A woman who appears to have lead cow tendencies has leadership capabilities but doesn't do the job in a constructive, cooperative, and team effort kind of way. If others don't follow her lead easily, she'll work at talking them into seeing things her way. Subtle persuasion or sharing grievances and opposing opinions indirectly aimed at ideas that are different from hers may be used. Ladies with lead cow syndrome may candy-coat their angle in order to convince others to take their side and make it appear like they're being polite about others' ideas.

In some instances they'll bring up their suggestions frequently. The objective is to wear down others who are on the fence line until they relent. Another strategy is highlighting the disadvantages of all ideas that aren't the same while highlighting the positives of their own in hopes of persuading others in their favor.

I have legitimate excuses for any of my "lead cow" syndrome moments as a driver. I was most-likely running late — due to some cow-related problem. In regards to the times when I wanted my way, I consider those lead cow instances perfectly acceptable and normal behavior. I'm a married woman.