Firstly, one way to look at relationships is, that relationships would be boring if men and women didn’t have any differences. This is what the book Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus highlights so well.
Have you thought that it may be the differences that cause the sparks in a relationship? These sparks, more often than not, keep the flame of the relationship burning.
Do you know of some people who may have continual conflict and perhaps fight, then connect or reconnect again when the air has been cleared?
Do you get frustrated at times when you know there is something going on and your man does not express himself or his emotions? Or have you sort of got used to this and given up trying to extract what’s going on? Most women have a need to understand what is going on inside their man and also have the need to be clearly heard and understood themselves.
From this angle, frustration and conflict in relationships come from each partners lack of real understanding of each other and being able to effectively communicate so the other partner understands their feeling and needs.
All relationships are different, however relationship experts like marriage counsellors, relationship counsellors and couples counsellors have observed some common patterns that occur. So here are 5 common reasons why men don’t talk about their relationship problems:
- Men are taught not to show their feelings. We were born in a society that tells us to behave in a certain way. Men are generally raised to “Be A Man”, to remain strong and masculine. Many are brought up with the saying “Men don’t cry”. They rarely get all mushy and express how they are really feeling. This would be a sign of weakness and is definitely not macho.
- Men are problem solvers. More often than not, men are problem solvers. Give them something to fix and they will want go to work on it. Whether it be a mechanical problem or a relationship issue, they will be looking for the quick fix and to move on. Trouble is, that metaphorically, most men have a limited set of tools, like say just a hammer and a saw. And like the old Mark Twain saying “To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail”, so when it comes to ‘fixing’ relationship problems these tools don’t work. Women are more sensitive to relationship issues and are generally have a more refined and different set of tools and skills available to them.
- Men tend to internalise their issues. Men rarely talk about their relationship problems and often brush them off believing that everything is alright and they will go away. While women will often share and release their pain with tears, men generally bottle it up. Trouble is, that at some stage what is bottled up needs to be released and may come out out as a burst frustration or anger. Or it may get stored in the body and create stress related conditions. Have you actually seen a guy together with his best mates crying over petty fights? Not likely!! Men have different outlet than women. Men will often get easily side tracked onto interests, hobbies or other things they feel they have more control over. Or take their frustrations out somewhere else.
- Men hope the relationship issue will go away. Men don’t overthink their relationship issues. In fact men generally don’t like think about relationships issues. Men often feel that their role is to be the provider for the family, the bread winner. Because men feel deep down their love for their partner and family, they feel they are doing their part and everything will just work out. So they will often avoid relationship issues and will hope they will simply just go away. This is why men are surprised when the wife walks out of their relationship, when the wife in her mind has been flagging issues for quite some time. This leads on to the next point.
- Men don’t get how important the relationship issue really is. Most men are just not aware about how serious problems in their relationships can be because it is often not pointed out to them, by their partners, in a way that they really understand and get it. Perhaps the hammer may come in handy here…… Sometimes the only way to wake a man up is to demonstrate how serious things have got by talking about leaving. I was at an event with Dr John Demartini when he said that he would often advise the woman to separate while there was some love still left in the relationship. This would give a wake up call to the man. This is because when a woman has tried her best to resolve the issues and sees that the only option left is leaving, women will generally dismantle all the love in their relationship so when she actually leaves there is no coming back for the man and he is devastated.
To simply put it, men are generally not emotionally expressive creatures (unless for some it is around sport or some other passionate hobby. Science and studies have shown that the male brain is wired differently to the female brain. Men tend to deal with things on their own, they feel they need to solve problems themselves and men have their own way of expressing their frustrations which generally is entirely different from women. Women generally are more open to sharing their emotions with close friends and this can serve as a release valve. However, it is likely that the underlying relationship issues are still there,
As a relationship expert, helping you become your own relationship expert, these are some of the facts worth looking into so you can have a better understanding on how men think and why they don’t talk about the issues you are having in your relationship.
The trick to being heard is to learn to share and express what you see is happening in the relationship in an unemotional way, in a language that your man will understand. I mentioned earlier about “using a hammer” to be heard. Please do not use it on his head even though at time you might want to.
Also, if things have got to the point of feeling that something really has to change, and if you feel your only option is to leave, find a good professional to talk with. A good professional will always help you come up with more options. They will help you add to your tool kit, and enable you to be more empowered in yourself and your relationship.
If you have any questions or feedback or just want to have somebody too speak about your relationship, feel free to reach out and have a conversation with me. Also, feel free to pass this on to anyone you know that may benefit from this.
Here’s to more happy, loving, and fulfilling relationships. Until next time.
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