I have had hundreds of sessions where a lady in a session is sharing her upset and the man is totally confused as to why she would feel this way.
His confusion usually results in him minimising and dismissing her feelings, this can for many become a behaviour he will learn to regret so please take the next few minutes seriously.
So as this dynamic keeps popping up in my sessions, I thought I’d share what I’m seeing to help anyone in this situation.
In simple terms, many women are sharing their emotional distress, but their husbands are simply not connecting to the severity of what they are experiencing.
She feels the problem is 11/10 so painful and urgent, he, in contrast, sees her problem as 1/10 so not a problem at all and what’s all the fuss about?
Why don’t you just let it go? he says totally unaware she can’t.
To the men reading this please don’t ignore her because she is heading for a place she may struggle to come back from.
If she says we need help believe her, if she says she’s struggling believe her.
You see many men will think she is making a mountain out of a molehill she isn’t!
For her, him not hearing her can start her on a path to a change of identity which he won’t like and many women don’t like who they become either.
But this change will happen especially when she is around him as her wall goes up due to the stacked resentment she is attaching to him.
There are two emotional systems she will reactively bring to the table depending on how she is emotionally patterned.
The first pattern is this –
If this process continues the woman may conclude her sharing is a waste of time.
So she may stop communicating emotionally, but she can carry on a transactional relationship where she looks after her own emotions and protects herself.
Apart from the loss of sexual connection which is likely in this dynamic, he won’t see too much of a change from his perspective.
In fact, to him, it’s quieter so everything must be okay. Note to men: A quiet wife is not always a happy one.
After holding her real emotions in she may start to suffer from the occasional outbursts through sheer frustration, but she still doesn’t rely on him to help her.
He is totally unaware she has lost emotional security, and emotional connection and this means she has lost trust and that’s a problem.
She stops seeing him as a protection energy now she just resents him.
In this model, she can be emotionally detached from him, many men come into my session totally unaware of what he has done and he’s now fighting to save the marriage on his own.
The second pattern is this –
The second model is when she can feel he is minimising her feelings, but this time creates a volcanic reaction in her.
She still won’t get the connection she wants as she tries to get through.
In reaction, he is likely to defend, attack or abandon her, or worse try to reason with her so she sees it his way.
In his mind, she is overly emotional about nothing and also prone to irrational rages so clearly out of control.
In his head, she has behaved badly so he won’t reward this behaviour.
In her head, she won’t be able to keep this loss of connection up for much longer as she loses trust in him.
She can feel unsafe in the marriage.
She will feel far too masculine too often when she is around him.
Some women can start to wonder if she is in the wrong marriage, some get connection from affairs and others get their needs met through friends and family.
Men are not seeing what she is going through so are shocked when she tells him she is leaving or she wants a divorce.
Men must start to see the world she is in or she cannot be herself with him.
Many men tell me she is confusing, irrational, mean, and negative, unfortunately, all he is really telling me is how much he doesn’t understand about her.
Women’s logic is logical, but it’s just not his logic so if he keeps trying to solve their problems his way he will keep getting a bad reaction and then blame her.
So my message today is STOP thinking your perspective as a man is the only one.
I run programs to help both men and women on their own understand these critical differences and connect to why their partner is experiencing life this way.
So if this is happening to you please get a sanity check before anyone makes a decision they might regret.