Very often I have seen women complain to me that their husbands just wont listen to them and that they are emotionally unavailable. This can leave them feeling disconnected, resentful and lonely. Since communication is an inherent part of every woman, it is a critical part of building the relationship. It helps her feel safe to love and be loved. When she feels a lack of connect with her man, she assumes that he doesn’t care enough. She feels hurt. This leads to a vicious cycle wherein she too tones down her communication to protect herself.
Men on the other hand have their reasons to not listen to their wives the way their wives expect. During therapy I have observed that women always share their pain and problem through a proper history and describe their emotional journey in detail. Men on the other hand share their journey through facts minus the emotions. So, does it mean they are devoid of emotions or their communication process is inherently different from women? The fact is men get used to not trusting her emotions because with experience he realizes they can change. A man tends to feel his wife doesn’t always say what she means. He feels she changes her mind frequently. She can say she likes things when he knows she doesn’t. When given what she wants, she is not necessarily happy. Also, she can become emotional over trivial issues. She can get upset for no reason. She can express her hatred to him one day and then love him the next. And above all she can be controlling through an emotional roller coaster which can make men shut down. No offence to women programmed differently.
My message to all my readers is that since men and women communicate very differently in an intimate relationship, getting through an issue amicably or calmly can become challenging – they can continue going around in circles. Women may think they are crystal clear in conveying their thoughts, but men read their feelings differently. Men think women never follow a solution centric model. For they are generally looking for solutions to fix their problems. Once they get a solution, they move on. So, next time you feel your partner is not listening, remember this difference to understand him/her better. Hear and be heard – word to word.