“Men need to remember that women talk about problems to get close and not necessarily to get solutions.”John Gray, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus.
Recently I have noticed that every time my world is slightly rocked (That’s a nice way of saying I’ve gone into an emotional meltdown) it specifically happens when my hubby says or reacts completely differently of what I expect. One would think that with 7 yrs of marriage under the belt nothing should surprise me by now right?
That’s the thing about marriage that sometimes life itself presents you with events that makes you “go there” even when you don’t want too or are not ready. Not only you find yourself being emotionally vulnerable or exposed to situation never encountered but it also makes you have to deal and face not only a myriad of feelings, but thoughts, insecurities and actions.
I know where my reaction comes from or what triggers it. I have mentioned it before,It’s the moment I feel I don’t connect with him at an emotional level, more so when he is confronted with a situation that has to do with me. He literally goes into an emotional “shutdown mode” and what I recognize as his coping strategy at that moment (reaction) sucks big time.
That while sustaining the conversation he will interrupt and say something irrelevant, unrelated, and inappropriately stupid that has nothing to do with the moment and the seriousness of the situation in question that makes me feel he is disregarding my needs, my feelings and my wants.
I understand that it’s not easy for any of us to say the right thing on the get go and it isn´t that he isn´t capable of being emotionally available, it´s just that I think it is different for him to be or do so. Not only is he being exposed to feelings and situations never felt or encountered before. But that he is expected to be willing to be in touch with the discomfort, the anxiety, the apprehension and all other emotions it might bring forth, disregard it for a bit and focus on what I am feeling, wanting and needing from him. (I know it sounds selfish on my behalf for expecting that.)
Recently, health wise something happened (not going into detail as I’m still waiting on some test to be done) and while I was describing the situation to him, out of the blue he interrupts me to let me know my alarm clock was ringing. When he saw the many expressions that went through my face (Surprised, confused, perplexed at loss, mad, downright pissed) he tried fixing the situation by letting me know he would set the medical appointment immediately. I will state I did lose a little bit of control of my emotions; I let him know how displeased I was and left to my cross fit class. I did talked it over with my friend and with my sister, I came home , slept over it and then wrote him a text letting him know how displeased I had been and why and got upset all over again and let him have it and know it…again.
Later on, I asked him what would be the best approach if ever a similar situation would arise, if he would prefer that I text him what was happening so he would have enough time to ponder over it and then have a face to face conversation over it (he immediately disapproved of the text idea, preferred we talk about it but to give him time to assimilate it and patience on my part) and one of the things I realized from that conversation was that:
- He has/had a preconceived idea that he is/was expected to solve the situation I was in. (not so).
- That it is hard for him to understand that being “available” for me without doing anything at all means to be emotionally available and that it translates (to me) that he cares and that I can count on him just the way he knows he can count on me.
- And to continue to have these open conversations but most of all be surrounded by your go to people, when situation such as these arises, it helps a lot.
And in the meantime I’m going to go back to reading John Gray´s, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus and give him a copy. Let´s see how it goes. Will keep you posted!!