I don’t know why you bring up a problem when you don’t want it fixed

Guys and girls handle things differently. I realize that this is probably an age-old disagreement/argument-starter/discussion – but let’s hash it out anyway, shall we?

When we share a problem we just want to be heard. We want to know that there is someone else out there that will UNDERSTAND what we are going through and will empathize with us. When you try and jump in with an explanation of what we could do to try and remedy the situation it makes us think that you don’t really care and just want the conversation to end, you are just trying to come up with a quick fix and you don’t really understand us. Sometimes we don’t need a solution – we just need to talk about it, you know, one of those bitch and gripe sessions.

If there is a problem, fix it. Isn’t that what you are supposed to do? WHY come to me with a problem if you don’t want me to let you know what you could possibly do about it? I am happy to listen to you complain about your brother’s ex-girlfriends mother’s daughter’s brother-in-law but then I am going to give you advice. You eventually have to come to a resolution – you can only TALK about your problems for so long.

Sometimes I think that men and women weren’t meant to ever really get married – they should just live next door to one another and have conjugal visits every now and then. KIDDING (maybe).


Eric Jessen said...

I think someone's communication style functions very similarly to their love language: to them, it seems intuitive, natural, and really the best way to do things. And it's hard to receive communication/love in a style that's not your own.

I think the important thing is for men and women to realize that their way is not inherently better than the other (in either love languages or in communication) and to recognize the strengths/weaknesses of their own style as well as their significant other's.

If a guy and girl sit down to talk about their styles in these two areas and establish how they like to love/be listen to and give love/listen it will go a long way to ensuring the strength of their relationship.

One more thing. As a guy, I get tired of hearing from women that men "don't know how to listen" and "can't express their feelings" when, really, most men do both of those fine, they just do it differently than the woman wants them to. :)

Anonymous said...

Well, said Eric. As I was reading through the initial post I was thinking, "I don't really know how to respond, but I would like to." I think this is one of those posts that brings out "the ish" in people. I think both of you were actually working toward the same point. I am someone who does not like to communicate or express my feelings, but that has more to do with family dynamics, than being a man.

Also, I think we are doing our best to love when we offer solutions. It just doesn't appear that way.

Olivia McCain said...

in my current relationship, my boyfriend and i play the opposite of the stereotypical role. i am a solution oriented person and so when he expresses frustration or concern about a problem he's facing, i tend to want to solve the problem. (this goes hand in hand with my form of love language...service). i'm very practical about problem solving as well (where as he tends to lean on the romantic side...)
He prefers I just listen, offer support and encouragement and remind him that everything will be ok in the end. which seems easy enough but actually takes quite a bit of work on my part.

same goes for when i want to vent about something. i want to solve the problem and having him want to hold my hand or hug me sometimes frustrates me more. i don't need a hug...i need a solution! :)

sometimes i come down hard on myself because i know i am not a typical girl in how i communicate or express love. for a long time i thought something was wrong with me but i'm learning that this is who i am and that's ok.

and my boyfriend and i struggle at times communicating in the way that is best heard by our partner...but every day we practice and we think (i.e. pray) someday we'll find that balance.

any other ladies out there who find themselves to be outside the stereotype when it comes to communication? (please dear God don't make me be the only one...)


konigsmark said...

just give me a chance to fix it please.

B-W said...

This is an age-old problem, and however stereotypical it is (thanks, Olivia, for the reminder), does seem to hold true for quite a lot of us.

The only thing I would add is that, however frustrating it is, I think both styles are needed in a relationship. Solutions aren't everything, but they can be an important thing. And if caring isn't communicated, having a solution to a problem may not matter much.

Yeti said...

All valid points, thanks for the feedback. I think I did give a GREAT overstatement and generalization here - maybe just to rile you all up :)

But I think Eric makes a great point that it can go hand in hand with our personality or how we give and receive love best.

as far as standing in solidarity with you, olivia...not sure. i think i am a switch hitter - it depends on the situation. sometimes i just need someone to listen to me but other times i feel like they are "trying to understand" when they really just can't empathize and all i really wanted was their solution...