Women are confused about how to communicate with men. Let’s take a look at their top 8 issues.
I recently polled 300 single women over forty to reveal their biggest challenges with men and dating. I asked three questions. 1. What do you really think of men at this age? I wrote an article for the Good Men Project with their answers. Here’s what they said. 2. What are your biggest problems in dating? They said this. These two articles have already been shared over 10,000 times. And the comment section is buzzing with a lively and thoughtful discussion.
I’m excited to share the research for my final question, What are your biggest challenges in communicating with men?
It’s important for men and women to learn how to communicate effectively with each other. We benefit from knowing how and why we communicate differently, so we can learn to get along better and have richer relationships. In same-sex relationships, many of the same challenges exist.
Our relationships are enriched when we put an end to miscommunication. Wouldn’t it be great if we stopped jumping to the wrong conclusions because of misunderstandings?
When you know better, you do better. So, let’s begin a dialogue about how men and women communicate.
Single Women Reveal Their 8 Biggest Communication Challenges With Men
#1. After men email me on an online dating site, I don’t know what they want me to write. I feel they make knee-jerk judgments after I’ve written back.
Men, if you’re dating online, what types of emails do you respond to? Do you want women to keep emails shorter? More flirty? Ask a question? Let us know!
#2. I think I share too much. I’m too transparent. I want to know how much to reveal and when. It’s my experience that men like mystery or aloofness.
Men, do you like a mysterious woman? How much should a woman reveal? My thoughts on this is that people share their wounds too soon.
Dating often feels like a big dump; “here’s my baggage, can you deal with it?” I advocate for a slow reveal. It’s easier to handle someone’s hard stuff once you’re falling in love. What say you?
#3. I wonder if men say what they really mean. I don’t believe what they are telling me. I think they’re telling me what they think I want to hear.
Men, do you always say what you mean? I’m not sure most people are clear about they mean all of the time. Do you feel you need to placate your woman and tell her what she wants to hear, just to make her stop talking or calm down? My ex-husband would often ‘yes, dear’ me to shut me up. That made me mad. Have you ever done that?
#4. When talking online men send a picture of their penis as the first initial contact – wtf?!
Enough with the dick pics. They really really don’t turn us on. Really.
#5. I would like to get confirmation that men have actually heard and understood me. And I want them to pick up the phone and call instead of text.
Men, women love it when you acknowledge them. Please give us a little hint that you’re listening. It helps when you reflect back and ask if you heard correctly. Listening is sexy.
#6. In the emailing phase on the dating site, they are not reading what I have told them in a previous message. It’s frustrating, because I consider myself to be a very good communicator.
Men, if you are dating online and emailing a woman, let her know that you’ve read her profile and/or email. We truly appreciate when you reference something we’ve written. I teach my clients to find what they like in a man’s profile and highlight it in their first email. Please do the same if you want us to reply.
#7. I have trouble letting down my guard to reveal my authentic self. I find it difficult to communicate with men about safe sex. I struggle with asking for what I need and want clearly without sounding demanding and needy.
Without vulnerability, we have superficial relationships. It’s essential to let down your guard to connect deeply and intimately.
Women can be guarded for many reasons, but it’s often due to fear of rejection. And even though women are usually pretty good at expressing themselves, when it comes to dating, many struggle with how to express their needs. You probably struggle, too. So, let’s work on not making quick judgments, and give a relationship time to develop. Okay?
#8. Men don’t know how to communicate. I hate having to read their minds. They don’t say anything. Ugh!
This is a general statement, and it may seem harsh, but it is how many women experience men. We want you to speak up. We want to get to know you. If something bothers you, please don’t hold it in. Let us know, and we’ll try and be clear and open with you. Will you open up to us? No mind reading. It doesn’t work.
Women and men, can we please be kinder, more understanding, and open with one another? Let’s work on creating an atmosphere where communication feels safe. And let’s try to really get to know how our partners think and feel. Don’t assume. Ask questions. Get curious. When you come from a wholehearted, openhearted place, dating and relationships will seem so much easier and much more fun.
What are your biggest struggles in communication with a love interest? Please share your thoughts below.
Photo: Flickr/Stephen McCulloch