I was in the gym today with Greg when he said something that sparked a long humorous conversation. He was trying to tell me something – I didn’t hear correctly – started to interject something totally different – and he stopped me and said, ‘You’re just not hearing me – you’re not hearing my heart‘ Oh brother. I say ‘Oh brother’ because he is saying it with TONS of sarcasm in his voice – and a chuckle at my expense!!
This has been a part of our love relationship for years now. The differences in us that make us laugh. Greg making fun of women – (mainly me) and imitating all the silly ‘girly’ phrases and things we women do. It works for him – because he always manages to get some kind of reaction from me – and he likes that. And I tease and poke fun at him – when he becomes too serious – or too stuffy – and it always makes him laugh.
Men love to make fun of women. Case and Point: The movie ‘Titanic” – where the old Rose is saying about her memory of Jack (the man she loved) – ‘he saved me in every way a woman can be saved’. Greg loves to make fun at that movie – and especially cheesy lines like that. His first response is – ‘You’ve GOT to be kidding, right’? But I know what she meant by that line in the movie – women get it. Women understand these deep mysteries of feelings and emotions – and Men pretend they don’t. When probed – I have discovered that men really do get it - it’s just not ‘manly’ to admit it.
Now why is this? Men have feelings and emotions – this is for certain – and no one can hurt a man like a woman can. Remember the recent series “Men of a certain age”? Actor Ray Romano tells his son about women, ‘they have many ways they can hurt us”.
So if this is true – and men feel the same feelings about love and other things that we do – why is it considered weak - or ‘girly’ to admit it? Very few men will admit to crying at a sad movie – although I’ve seen both my husband and son do it – but not many others. Most men are guarded when it comes to expressing those ‘touchy feely’ feelings. And I believe it is drilled into them as little boys to be tough and not show emotion. That somehow it weakens them to admit they struggle – or have fear – or are afraid – or feel helpless in the midst of love – or can be hurt enough to cry. Remember the song in the 70’s by the group ’10cc’ where one of the lines is ‘Big boys don’t cry’? How sad that men believe this – how sad that they are made to feel they must be like this.
It is interesting that when you know a man – really know him - he is not afraid to reveal some of that emotion. But he must feel safe. And just because they don’t feel like they always can express emotions like a woman can – does not mean that they don’t have them.
I’ve been married to this man of mine for 29 years this Sunday – and one of the great things I’ve discovered is this: we are different – but we are basically the same underneath all the layers. Our emotions are basically the same – with different reactions to pain and hurt. We both know what it feels like to be vulnerable and misunderstood – or to be used and tossed aside. We both understand love and relationships – and have felt all sorts of emotions in relation to each other and in raising children. We both can still make each other laugh – and we’re great friends – even through some of the rough patches that life has thrown at us. And that’s so nice to know. ♥
He will continue to tease and make fun – I will continue to make him scratch his head in confusion – and make him laugh – it is our dance. And so our journey continues – with its mysteries and lessons – and its laughter. It is our story – it is our love relationship.
- Men, Women, Emotions and Communication (psychologytoday.com)
- What Men Want in Their Women? (socyberty.com)
- There’s No Such Thing as an Emotional Affair (socyberty.com)
- 8 Mistakes Men Make with Women (lifescript.com)
- Leave Your Emotional Baggage Behind (lifescript.com)
- Are Men & Women From Different Planets? (psychologytoday.com)