Men and women: we’re different. Comedian Mark Gunger illustrates just how different. He says men’s brains are full of separate boxes. If a man is going to talk about something, he pulls out that box without disturbing the others. Women’s brains are like spagetti–emotion and relationships intertwine everything. In his own words…
Recently I spoke at a women’s gathering about what men wish their wives knew. My wife was concerned I’d spend too much time on one particular subject. “They don’t want to hear about that from you!” she said. Good thing I came up with a bigger list. She was right; but, let’s start there anyway…
“Women are like crock pots and men are like microwaves. Doesn’t my husband know that?” she asked. Probably not, but he can learn if you use English rather than hints and guessing games.
Aretha Franklin sang it, but Otis Redding wrote it. Showing a man respect is like scratching right in the center of an itch. Here are two common “Respect killers…”
1) Second-guessing. In a certain tone of voice, “Turn here!” from the passenger seat sounds like competition rather than navigation. Imagine he’s missed the turn and is doubling back. Instead of dwelling on it, you change the subject. Men experience that kind of grace as a massive boost.
2) Mothering. Instead of asking him why he didn’t take out the garbage, explain how you need him. Name, don’t shame. Teach him your need without judgment or condescension.
Your Point of view
Opinions ARE wanted: But plant it, don’t push it. A pushy opinion invites a contest of wills. An opinion planted as a seed needs room to grow.
Complaints ARE needed: Men must know your needs in order to meet them. HOW you complain is key. Don’t use an unmet need like an emotional lever, or to injure. And no guessing games to test how much he cares–you’ll both fail. DO leave your concern at his feet rather than waving it under his nose. Use “I” statements rather than “You” to avoid cornering.
Getting His Attention
Ever have to repeat yourself? A wise woman used to walk into my field of view at work to make eye contact before speaking. She understood men are like lighthouses, focusing on one thing at a time. Wait for the light to swing around. If you start talking too soon, he may miss it, but not on purpose.
Especially when he fails, a man needs your confidence. Rather than offering sympathy or excuses, just listen. It may some time for him to connect in his lows as well as his highs. Just as you don’t want him to fix your feelings, don’t try to fix HIM.
Beware of layering: “Since you came home so late, the kids started blowing off their homework (and you know how their grades are slipping), so I stepped in, and meanwhile the supper burned so I ordered pizza; which reminds me, we are way over budget on almost everything….” To you, it may just be venting stress; to him, it feels like sitting on top of a dunk tank watching you gather an armload of baseballs.
Fewer boxes at a time.
Whereas women relate well face to face, men prefer shoulder to shoulder. Play together. See what happens.
What do you think, Ladies? Any comment?