In 2015 I wrote a blog about Why Men do Not show emotions ?
I re-read my blog today, and here is some of what I wrote:
“Whenever a frustrated woman in a therapy session asks me the question, “why doesn’t he talk to me about his emotions” or on the contrary, the frustrated man is trying so hard to explain and show their emotional side to their partners; I ponder if the word we call emotion is to ‘blame’? or maybe it’s that men and woman have different ways to show emotions? or is it that we are scared to talk about our emotions for fear we will get it ‘wrong’, or from the feared negative consequences?
According to Dr. Sue Johnson, the founder of EFT (Emotional Focused Therapy), we at times do not show our emotions, or talk about them, because we are afraid. The fear of being vulnerable, the fear of being rejected or abandoned, the fear of being wrong, the fear of not doing it ‘right’… Men may have a harder time showing and expressing their emotions, partly because they may be afraid to get it wrong and are quicker to withdraw into the ‘freeze or flee’ or ‘fight or flight’ mode prompted by a primary panic button of danger.
“I cannot do it right by her” he tells me. “I try to be emotional but then she thinks I am weak” he says, or “I hide my emotions and try to be reasonable but then she feels I am avoiding the issues and then when I do finally show anger (which is an emotion), she gets angry back.” And then he says, “I cannot win this,” and sighs, and then we give up, or resign, or withdraw or whatever we do (men and women) when we feel hopeless and helpless.”
In an article in Elephant blogs, Keith Artisan writes:
“Men don’t fall short in the emotional realm because we are emotionally immature. We are emotionally inexperienced. Men face expectations and pressure about emotions that are confusing and contradictory. And when we find a woman who loves us and we love in return, it brings to life a living fire that had been suppressed for a lifetime. Yet fires burn, and the burgeoning sensitivities is akin to a child learning to walk. We fall down, we make blunders, and we are blind as to how to listen and communicate our emotions.”
In the last few year I have more understanding and knowledgeable what it is to be an ’emotional man’, and what are the obstacles men are facing to explore there emotions.
In her work with men Ester Perel, identifies the challenges of ‘What does it mean to be a man.
She talks about the dilemma and the dichotomy of the modern male; emotionally evolved and willing and able to care give, while also pulled toward gender norms that is ingrained in us all.
“The construction of gender identity for men is more fragile than for women. In many cultures, one is born a woman — and one becomes a man. Chip Brown explores wide-ranging rites of passage into manhood from around the world in this National Geographic article.”
During many years of observing men and women in my Couples Therapy practice I have learned so much about how being vulnerable in an ‘aphrodisiac’ for women. In my work with couples I have witnessed that women find men more attractive, and approachable, and are more likely to want to be intimate, when the men they are with, are showing their vulnerable side.
Contrary to the ‘myth’ that women like their men, strong, tough, distant and detached, I have seen so many times, that when men finally open up, and let their women ‘in’, by being vulnerable and talking about their fears, hurts, and needs, women feel more connected, safe, and wanting to be intimate. I find that to be true with gay men, in same sex couples, connecting through our vulnerability is what we do.
In my blog Intimacy = In To Me You See I wrote:
“Intimacy is not sex, intimacy is the ability to allow someone in, to deeply trust that they are there for us, that it is safe to be open and naked and truthful. When we feel safe to let that person in, when we put down walls and guards of defense and protection, then bonding, weather through sex, cuddle, conversation or any other behavior can be so much more fulfilling..”
This is from his website:
“And here’s the kicker: when you really step into living an as emotionally healthy man, women will actually appreciate you more and be more attracted to you. In spite of what they are told, women find that they would rather have a man who is emotional in a masculine way than some masculine version of themselves. There needs to be a distinct difference in how each sex is emotional so there is polarity and attraction.”
“Men are often stuck living in the duality of being macho OR sensitive. It doesn’t have to be either/or. You can have it both ways—you can have it all—by entering into the new place of relaxed power. We are no longer just hard-ass men; nor are we men trying to be emotionally real by modeling women. We are teaching each other that a man can be strong and open simultaneously. We are teaching each other how to succeed as Remarkable Men.”
Many of you have asked me about the Men Work Owen does.
Here is an opportunity for to find out for yourself, and to immerse in some deep men work.
Owen is offering his ‘Two Day Experience’, here in our town of Nevada City, CA.
Owen brings with him the width of decades of leading and facilitating men’s groups all over the country, helping men access their masculine emotional intelligence and vulnerability.
Owen and his colleagues created Evrymen as a platform to help men connect and evolve in the company of their ‘tribe’. You can check out Evrymen page to learn more about his company.
In there mission they write:
“We created Evryman so we could impact generations of men, to help them become better men, better partners, and raise better sons and change the culture of what it means to be a man. We believe men can and should be living more purposeful, connected and fulfilling lives. Men should be in touch with everything they feel, what they want, and learn to fully experience and express their needs and desires in a supportive culture and community.”
If you have any questions, please contact Owen Marcus at: 208.265.8440 or firstname.lastname@example.org
For More information, here is the webpage: https://freetowin.co/ca
Do not miss this retreat opportunity. See you around town..
I hope you enjoy this last bits of spring and have a safe and beautiful summer.