Men are fundamentally different than women. Yet, a recent study showed that men and women speak about the same number of words per day on average. The stereotype that men are mostly mute and women are chatterboxes is just a stereotype. The conversations may be different. As this study showed, in general, men spoke about sports and gadgets while women mostly spoke about relationships.
Men and women tend to approach problems differently and have their own coded languages. Most people, men and women, do not listen to understand. They hear and are already concluding what needs to be replied. Both, men and women, are constantly ready to exchange ideas or opinions. The only difference with men and women in terms of communication is that women are emotional beings. Men are not always driven by their emotions. They need a beginning, middle and ending in a quicker manner.
HERE ARE SOME OF THE REASONS MEN DON’T LISTEN:
MEN DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT WOMEN WANT
Women, in general, speak with emotions that men cannot decipher at times. Men tend to be direct when they want or need something. Women need to rationalize, express and process through words and how they feel. Men need to get down to the point. Often times, when a woman wants to be heard she has a hard time expressing exactly what it is that she needs. Women are moved by how others feel. They don’t want to hurt others. They are nurturing and deeply aware of their surroundings.
Author, John Gray of Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, says that, “When a man can listen to a woman’s feelings without getting angry and frustrated, he gives her a wonderful gift. He makes it safe for her to express herself. The more she is able to express herself, the more she feels heard and understood, and the more she is able to give a man the loving trust, acceptance, appreciation, admiration, approval, and encouragement that he needs.”
MEN CAN’T HANDLE THE DUMPING
The art of conversation requires not just listening but understanding what is being said. Men call it “dumping” and may feel that their woman is essentially unloading all of her emotional baggage onto him. Because men are genetically wired differently, they feel overwhelmed by all the emotions. A man begins to feel frustrated because he can’t “fix” the issue or problem. It isn’t that he’s not hearing what his counterpart has expressed. It’s just that he can’t resolve to a quick solution in order to ease her stress. And to him, this sort of venting is challenging. It feels as if he’s being attacked. Men don’t process their emotions very well and they usually have their own stress in a giant backpack that has to be unloaded. It’s not that they aren’t listening. It’s just that they are protecting themselves from their own emotional turmoil that they can’t release the same way that a woman can.
WOMEN WANT AGREEMENT
Most women deal with a million issues in a 24 hour time period. They are mothers, employers, business owners, wives, daughters, and a hundred other positions. Sometimes what they want is to be held and feel acknowledge for all that they do. They just want to feel that they are doing the best job possible. A woman wants to know that her man is the last person to take her for granted. Men carry their own hats in a day. They tend to check out because they need to forget all that they endured. A woman needs validation to feel nurtured and when she asks for an opinion it is because she is self-conscious or doubting her own ability to make the right choices.
WOMEN DON’T WANT A MAN TO FIX HER
Men like to fix things. When a woman goes to her man with a problem but tells him that she doesn’t want it fixed the man tunes out. Men want to attack an issue and put it to rest. They aren’t able to analyze it and try to figure out fifty ways to overcome it. He just wants her to be happy. The moment a woman relates to her man that he is not to fix the problem, that man will stop listening and focus on something that can actually be fixed.
MEN ARE THINKING ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE.
Aman can be sitting quietly or driving his vehicle deep in thought about something that is important to him. He may even have his headphones on listening to music or a podcast while thinking. Men are not multitaskers. They tend to focus like a laser on whatever it is they are doing. So they tend to tune out anything that isn’t the thing that they are working on or thinking about. They aren’t ignoring their women. They are simply in their own head space. If a woman wants to be heard she needs to make the point to get his undivided attention in a loving fashion.
John Gray says about men: “Love brings up our unresolved feelings. One day we are feeling loved, and the next day we are suddenly afraid to trust love. The painful memories of being rejected begin to surface when we are faced with trusting and accepting our partner’s love.” Men have a tendency of feeling overwhelmed by the nurturing of love. They begin to check out emotionally as a survival instinct. It’s up to the woman to make time to ask about him and his needs. If she feels unheard then she needs to also show her partner the same respect she expects in being acknowledged. Men hate nagging. They tune that out immediately.
MEN HATE TO BE INTERRUPTED
Let’s face it, most women can out talk a man. When she’s in the middle of sharing and then asks for an opinion but his opinion doesn’t size up to what’s in her head, she will continue bulldozing her way in the conversation. Men do not like to be shutdown or interrupted. It takes two to tango in a relationship and in a conversation. It’s not all one-sided. Remember that the word “listen” has the same letters as the word “silent.”
MEN ARE IN ANOTHER ROOM
Women are constantly multitasking. They can be unloading the dishwasher, making dinner, feeding a child, and talking about everything that happened in their day. Her partner may be in another room, and although she is talking out loud, he really can’t hear what she’s saying. He can hear her talking loudly but he just can’t make out what she’s trying to convey. If you want to have a meaningful conversation with him wait to have him in front of you.
MEN JUST AREN’T INTERESTED IN GOSSIP
Men really could care less what happened in the celebrity world. They don’t care what happened to your co-worker with her husband. Your partner wants to know about you. He wants to hear you talk about your dreams, your life together and what pertains to his immediate world. On rare occasions will you hear him talk about his friends or their issues. If you can’t stand listening to him ramble on about video games, cars, sports or work, you can imagine how he feels about something that doesn’t pertain to him. Men get bored easily with these type of conversations.
WOMEN TEND TO BE ALL OVER THE PLACE
When a woman is overstressed her train of thought bounces around from subject to subject. Your man may be sitting there trying to grasp the connection but he just can’t find it. He becomes lost in the rambling of your thoughts. And, immediately he starts to run through his own day and to-do list. Men have a hard time juggling so much. It is uncomfortable for them. They prefer to talk about one subject at a time not five different ones that are loosely connected by how they made their woman feel. It is best to stay on one topic at a time when having a conversation with your man. He would greatly appreciate it.
Men, just like women, require attention. When speaking to your man use words of praise, speak in a loving manner, show that you care about him the same way you want to be loved and be authentically interested in what he has to say as well. Conversations are a two-way street. Listening is truly an attitude of the heart. It requires full participation from both parties.