Strong and Silent Doesn’t Cut It

Question: Dear Luise: I am always trying to figure out how my husband feels. He will never say. I’m not a mind reader and this is getting really old. He just says it’s not “his thing” to get into it and he’s not comfortable with my probing. I’m not doing that. I’m trying to interact with him and he’s blocking every attempt I make. What’s up with this kind of thing? Stella D.

Answer: Dear Stella: This is one of those tough situations where I ask the one question you don’t want to hear. Was he bubbling over with the ability to share his feelings with you before you married him? You and I both know the answer to that question, right?

There are several avenues to explore but you can’t do it alone. Your husband needs to want to get in touch with his feelings or you are up the creek. It doesn’t sound, from what you have said, like he is anxious to rectify the situation.

If you can get him interested in experiencing life on a deeper level, then there are books to read, groups to join, counselors to seek out and time and money to allocate to the project. It’s usually a bumpy road and progress can be painstakingly slow.

If you don’t get a positive response, then you are going to have to imagine that you have a crystal ball if you plan on staying with him. His attitudes, responses, tone of voice, body language and facial expressions are going to have to be interpreted by you, so you can get a fix on what’s going on with him. Sad but true.

Behaviors are learned early-on. Men are often conditioned to express through actions, not words. It may be necessary for you to accept the fact that your husband will never be willing or able to give you verbal descriptions his inner processes.

Look within your self. What do you need? Why did you ignore your needs when you were picking out a mate? How can you adjust or can’t you? These questions are important, too. Explore your own feelings and options as well as doing your best to find out what your husband wants and is capable of. Blessings, Luise

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