Men and women tend to convey their emotions in different ways, according to Jennifer Ryan, M.Ed., LPS-S, in the article "For Women Only: Knowing What Matters Most to Your Husband," published on the Simple Marriage website. While it is important to consider your personal needs, looking beyond yourself to understand your husband's needs can help to strengthen your marriage. There are ways to connect and foster closeness with your husband without talking about his emotions.
Zip Your Lip
This is easier said than done, but when you allow yourself to connect nonverbally, communication will generally arise from the activity at hand, according to Patricia Love and Steven Stosney, psychotherapists and co-authors of the book "How to Improve Your Marriage Without Talking About It," in an interview by the same title published on Oprah.com. Love claims that deep connection and intimacy between partners occurs in those quiet moments. Men generally talk more when they feel connected with their wives, while women tend to feel the need to talk less, according to Stosney.
Talk as You Walk
Perhaps your husband becomes overwhelmed and withdraws because he feels powerless to solve your problems, according to Bob Grant, L.P.C., author of the best-selling "What Husbands Can't Resist," in the article "5 Things Your Husband Wishes You Knew About Him," published on DrLaura.com. Rather than try to talk to him and expect his undivided attention, take a walk or engage in another activity while you communicate. This can help him to physically deal with the shame he may feel when he feels he isn't meeting your standards, according to Stosney.
To draw your husband closer to you, show you respect him and believe in his abilities, suggests the author of the book "For Women Only," Shaunti Feldhahn, according to Ryan's article on Simple Marriage. Do this by acknowledging his efforts and achievements. Tell him you are proud of him; he will likely hear this as love, according to Feldhahn. The more your husband feels you are on his side, the more confidence he may exude. This can help to increase intimacy between you two.
The ability to see the positive in your husband is something you have complete control over. If negative thoughts regarding his shortcomings cross your mind, change the channel in your mind until you are able to focus on his strengths. Bite your tongue if you have the urge to criticize your husband, suggests motivational speaker and author Tiffany Fletcher in the FamilyShare article "7 Simple Ways to Grow Closer to Your Spouse." By seeing and speaking to your husband in a positive light, you will increase loving feelings. Your husband will pick up on this, and he will likely respond by reciprocating that love.
Karen Kleinschmidt has been writing since 2007. Her short stories and articles have appeared in "Grandma's Choice," "Treasure Box" and "Simple Joy." She has worked with children with ADHD, sensory issues and behavioral problems, as well as adults with chronic mental illness. Kleinschmidt holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Montclair State University.
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