Author’s note: Both men and women can struggle with this one. In fact, it’s a really common human problem. However, I chose to talk to men, since men seem a little more asleep at the wheel when it comes to listening and validating their partner.
Let’s face it. Men are slower and more dense than women when it comes to relationship skills.
It’s not our fault, though, we just didn’t get the training in our childhood. Most of us guys were “conditioned” to behave in ways that crippled our relationship skills, despite our sensitivity.
In other words, we got trained out of our relational sensitivity as boys.
This led me to being a grown man who “couldn’t do relationship” and I was a complete failure at intimacy for over ten years.
I was a fairly typical guy—when the women I dated got emotional, I’d run away, or make them wrong. Until, I figured this one out…
So, fellas, if you want your woman to soften and open to you, and you want less drama, stop your whining and complaining and definitely don’t “frack” on her.
What the frack does that mean?
Basically fracking is an acronym for really bad listening skills and us guys are notorious for this behavior.
But why do guys Frack? (And, yes, some women do this too.)
Back in the day, when a woman I was dating was upset, I would get uncomfortable. Because I was uncomfortable with emotional upset, I wanted to make it better, fast. So, I’d frack on her and shut her down. Many men are like I was.
So, here’s a short video for the men out there that will help you prevent her from shutting down or freaking out.
Didn’t watch the vid? No problem.
Here’s a quick summary of no F.R.A.C.K.I.N.G.:
When you try to fix your woman, you assume she wants fixing. And, if you are a stereotypical man, this is one of your default settings.
A girlfriend would share her problem and because I was uncomfortable in the unknown and her feelings around it, I’d try to make it better. Fixing is one way we try to make it better but our woman doesn’t want to be fixed.
Granted, sometimes my wife wants help solving a problem. In those moments she asks me to help her fix it. But most of the time, she just wants to be heard.
Rescuing is the arrogant assumption that your woman isn’t okay with how she’s feeling and needs you to rescue her. This will often shut a woman down or enroll her in taking care of you because she feels bad that you are “missing the mark” and so she may let you rescue her because she know that helps you.
But that’s completely backwards here. You are the one trying to support her. So, I know it sounds confusing, but do not try to rescue her.
Don’t give your woman advice unless she wants it. Remember, she wants to be heard, validated and understood. She wants you to be with her on the ride of her emotional landscape.
Stick to giving your guy friends advice. Even though this is an exceedingly limited way of relating to other men, it works for most guys. When you learn true relationship skills with your male friends and bust out of your fear-based conditioning, you’ll start to see the depth and power of male friendships. That deepening of your male friendships is one key to go deeper with your woman.
One of the most unattractive human qualities people have is complaining. And, even worse is you complaining about your woman either behind her back or to her face.
Complaining just demonstrates that you have more work to do. It shows your emotional maturity.
No Killing her experience:
Want to shut her down? Deny or invalidate her experience. Justify or defend your behavior. Tell her she’s wrong by invalidate her experience.
This means, that us guys often say stupid sh*t that ends up killing or squashing her experience. Our “way” denies or makes her experience wrong. Before my wife trained me, I killed the experience of nearly every woman I dated.
Remember, no one’s experience is wrong or invalid. It’s just their experience.
Nice work! Now, here’s your next step:
If you want her to be less of a drone, then step up and learn how to validate her feelings. It’s a simple skill that can be learned by any man, any where. And, if you don’t go learn it, no problem, just don’t expect her to open up to you, and if she has any self-respect at all, she’ll eventually leave you for a man that can, and will, meet her here.
Relephant bonus: The all-time Best Buddhist tip for making relationships last:
Author: Jayson Gaddis
Editor: Katarina Tavčar
Photo: Author’s own