That title reads very negative – but it isn’t. This post is meant to be positive and a helpful tool for you to navigate your wife’s emotional journey.
As a woman I would be lying if I said I never get emotional. As a man, you’d be lying if you said you always understand every single time your woman gets emotional. Am I right? Yes.
Women get emotional over everything. And some days are worse than others – if you know what I’m saying 😉 Thank you, Mother Nature. I’ve been known to lose it over a McDonald’s commercial. I’ve been known to get pretty heated in public when I see a parent belittling/abusing a child.
Or the time my husband and I drove up next to a cop who turned his siren on as a warning when Brent changed lanes quickly to avoid hitting someone who cut him off. There we were, next to each other, at the red light and I looked over at the cop and put my hands up like “What???” Then I rolled down my window to chat about it! What the?? Then the cop rolled down his window… well, almost – he accidentally rolled down the backseat window and I about lost my stuff right there, folks. Eventually he found his window button and I asked him – Did you just “Whoop-Whoop” us? <<< That’s the sound a siren makes) And I quietly thought to myself, “Guuurl, you have lost your ever-loving-mind. I wasn’t even being emotional but there are times when us women just can’t/won’t bite our tongues. [Please note: I love our men and women in blue. And our city of Franklin are protected by some of the finest!]
Sometimes women are navigating through deep-rooted emotional pain from a loss, from shame, from being hurt physically/emotionally/sexually. Women process hurt and fear differently than men do, so it makes perfect sense that men will not always understand the emotions of women.
Well, Brent and I have been together since 1990 and we have learned a lot in this area. He has treaded some intensely rough waters with me as I’ve journeyed to healing from my abortions, abandonment and abuse. These are the top three things Brent learned to change 😉
1- Not Validating Her Feelings
You may not understand but that doesn’t make what she is feeling wrong. Statements like: You shouldn’t feel that way. That’s dumb. You’re making no sense at all. That’s not how I’d feel about it… these do not work at all and will only cause her to shut down. Worse yet, it devalues her.
Try these statements instead: I believe what you’re feeling is real. I am sorry you’re feeling that way – how can I help you? These speak life and worth into her. They also help with number two.
2 – Not Giving Her A Safe Place
Men, you should be your woman’s go-to safe place. Yes, she has her girlfriends and that is important and needed; but no one knows her as intimately as you do. Her biggest fears and deepest secrets are safest with you, but if she doesn’t feel like she can open up to you then she will not feel safe handing over her deepest hurts.
Ways to make her feel safe: Ask her questions beyond, “How was your day?”. Ask her about her childhood, her favorite memories, her high school BFF, why orange is her favorite color. Start the safe dialogue to earn the deep dialogue.
3 – Not Following Up
Don’t just check that emotionally revealing heart moment of hers off your husband to-do list.
Try this: The next day, send her flowers thanking her for opening up. Or, after dinner the next day ask her how she is feeling after your conversation. Perhaps share with her something you learned about yourself, or her, as a result of her opening up to you.
This demonstrates that you value her, are grateful for who she is, and that you are for her. She needs to know that you are her biggest champion, the one that knows her on a soul level, the one that she can exhale her emotions with.
And stay tuned – Brent will be sharing a follow-up post, “Wives: 3 Ways To Help Your Husband Help You”