Guys are often accused of not listening to their girlfriend / friend / sister / mother / wife in conversations that they have with them. Why is this and is it true?
Often times you hear this phrase coming from the lady in the “conversation”.
“I don’t want you to fix it, I want you to just listen.” Here we expect the guy to change the way “he actually is designed to listen” to accommodate the lady’s desire to be listened to so she can voice every feeling she is having concerning a situation she is unpacking.
The problem with this is two fold. One is you are really not having a conversation if the only thing you want for him to do is listen and then say “I’m sorry that happened to you.” What you are wanting is a place to dump everything you are saying on to someone else and that someone just needs to carry it on their shoulders indefinitely. This is a bit unfair. However, women seem to be able to listen in this way, which is great, but guys are different than your girlfriends ( I know this is an unpopular idea) so please quit requiring men change and be something they are not. It bothers us and should bother you.
The second issue is this… if you want your man to listen to you, you need to understand how a man listens. If a man is truly listening to you he is analyzing everything you are saying and is coming up with possible solutions. It’s not that he “just has to fix things” rather it’s – he can only listen to an issue or problem while his brain is coming up with a solution to that issue. If you require him not to present solutions while you are talking and getting your feelings off your chest” he will stop “really”listening to what you are saying in order to accomplish your request to “not fix it”. (FYI – he will be able to repeat portions of what you have said, drawing them from his memory, BUT he really hasn’t listened to you an a meaningful way though it may have been meaningful for you.). When a guy is really listening in a deep way he will respond in the way God has designed him – with solutions. He does this because this is how men express they care.
So, in your relationship if your man watches TV while you are talking to him, he is only trying to give you the opportunity to say whatever is on your mind without interjecting solutions. He has found a way to distract himself enough so he will not give you the solutions his mind would come up with if he was listening to you in a deep meaningful way, thus fulfilling your need to talk.
If he is silent while you are talking to him and doesn’t present any solutions, either he is internally frustrated (though he has figured out how not to show that to you), or he thought about something else while you were talking so you can dump everything you are feeling about an issue on him and feel better in the end without his input. Just remember he hasn’t really sympathized until he has offered a solution or two. I know this is mind boggling to you but its true.
I think it’s time that women change their perspective on how a man should listen to them. Instead of pushing him to listen in a way that makes you feel like he cares, recognize his “responding to you with solutions” comes from a deep place of care and love for you. A place that is much deeper than your requirement for him to listen in a more shallow way. Women need to embrace this fact and be thankful for it.
But – If you don’t want to change – just remember you are pushing “your man” into a position to be something he’s not… and that is fakery.
But hey… fake and feeling good might be the way you want to go. He at least is trying to comfort you, though its unnatural for him – and in the end that has to count for something … right?