On Monday, our post was about how men can do things to feel more supported by their wife or girlfriend. In today’s post, we’ll look at the reverse trend: guys who are unsupportive of their wives or girlfriends.
Women complain that they, too, don’t feel supported by their guy, and there’s a difference in what women want from men. A big difference.
While men generally feel like they’re being supportive, it’s the kind of support that they offer that might be falling short for some women. I hear all the time, “If my guy knew, really knew, how to support me, I wouldn’t be on his case so much. He should be able to do it on his own, without me telling him to do what I want him to do.”
Men generally want to make their wives and girlfriends happy. Sometimes, they simply don’t know what that looks like. They have the desire to support, and are eager to please, but men can’t read women’s minds. I know a lot of guys say that they really don’t know what their women want, and this can be true in some circumstances. Men need specific directions to act. We need operating manuals, or step-by-step directions, and in the realm of the emotional, men are often first-time navigators.
Meeting the emotional needs of women is something that is difficult for the majority of men. Read: most men. Guys want to support their wives and girlfriends emotionally, yet lack the tools, and sometimes the patience, to understand. Instead, men resort to doing, which is different from being (or being present/listening deeply). Men know how to do; women know how to be – this is an often difficult bridge for guys to cross. Men want to solve problems for women, as they’re so good at in many other capacities in their lives, yet in the relationship realm, they fall short.
Understanding that ‘to do’ is being supportive for many men, and empathizing with your guy about his determination to please you, to support you, is how he knows how to do it for now. It doesn’t mean that he can’t be attuned to support your emotional needs. Men are emotional beings, too, and can learn the way of their emotions, but it takes time and patience. Especially from those they fully support.