Male relationship psychology

Understanding Men In Relationships: 7 Truths About How Guys Think


There's no blueprint for how men think in relationships

Sorry! There is no one way all men think in relationships. For every 10 guys out there who are scared of intimacy or prefer to take things slow, there are another 10 guys out there who are hopeless romantics just waiting for the chance to settle down with the right person and start a family.

It's really convenient to blame any tension, confusion, or disagreements with our boyfriends or potential partners on the idea that "men are just different." But the truth is, no two men will be exactly the same in the ways they approach relationships. If you feel like you don't understand the way your partner is behaving, that's not because he's a guy—it's because he's not you. He's a whole, separate human being who does not think the same way you do, and to understand how he thinks and what he wants, you're going to need to just ask him. Nothing you read on the internet will fully explain why the particular man you're dealing with is the way he is. Only he can tell you.


Men and women are not intrinsically different

Culturally, we do tend to raise boys and girls differently: Boys are rewarded for being tough and adventurous, while girls are rewarded for being good caretakers. Research shows parents use more words about emotions with their daughters (supporting better emotional intelligence) and more words about spatial objects with their sons (supporting better STEM skills). That stuff all sticks with us and affects the kinds of people men and women grow up to be.

"Different genders are socialized differently and, generally speaking, often have different societal expectations," explains Jesse Kahn, LCSW, CST, sex therapist and director at The Gender & Sexuality Therapy Center. "Of course, people push back on the ways in which their world is trying to socialize them and push back on those expectations. However, this difference could have impacts on how people think, interact, and navigate the world."

That means the differences between men and women are not inherent: Women are not "naturally" better at talking about their feelings, and men are not "naturally" more logical. It's important not to make assumptions about what your man is and isn't capable of based on his gender, nor to pigeonhole him into certain stereotypes. Don't assume how he feels about things just because he's a man.


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Some men need space, and it's not because they're falling in love

There's a pervasive cultural myth that men are mean or act distant when they like you or that men pull away when they are falling in love. But this is another one of those convenient excuses: We tell ourselves that when someone is pulling away, it's because they like us too much. It's easier to believe that than to just admit that they might not be as interested in you as you thought.

If your boyfriend or partner asks for space, ask them what they mean by that and why they need it. It's totally normal to want alone time in a relationship, but you shouldn't make assumptions about why they need it. Ask for clarity about what your man is experiencing when he asks for space so you can better understand what they need and whether you're able to give it to him. If you're feeling lonely in your relationship, you can tell him that. Open and honest communication is the key to figuring out the best way to approach these situations so that everybody's needs are being met.


Some men fear commitment and intimacy

And so do some women. This isn't gender-specific.

Some people do experience fear when falling in love—because it's really scary to be that vulnerable! When you're falling in love, you have the possibility of getting hurt. Some people instinctively run away from serious relationships because they're too afraid of that possibility of heartbreak. Again, it's easier to choose to leave yourself than to suffer through a possible rejection.

This behavior is common among people with an avoidant attachment style. Your attachment style is your way of behaving in relationships, and it's shaped based on your earliest interactions with your first caregivers (more on that here). The three main adult attachment styles are secure attachment (you can easily love and be loved by others), anxious attachment style (you tend to need a lot of attention and validation to feel love), and avoidant attachment style (you tend to need a lot of space and can feel suffocated in relationships).

Some research suggests men are more likely to develop an avoidant attachment style, potentially because of the aforementioned differences in how boys and girls are treated in childhood.

"Generally speaking, I don't think men are afraid of commitment," Kahn adds. "One could argue that because masculinity can be associated with not being vulnerable, and commitment and intimacy involve vulnerability, that some men may appear or experience fear or resistance to commitment. "


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Men aren't encouraged to engage with their feelings

It's not true that "men don't talk about their emotions," Kahn says. That's just another stereotype we have, and unfortunately it becomes a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

"As a therapist, I talk to men all the time about their emotions," he explains. "With that said, a lot of the men I've worked with communicate feeling pressure or being socialized to avoid talking about sadness, emotional pain, relationship or emotional hardship, vulnerability, and any emotions they have internalized as weak."

If you're with a man who struggles to talk about his emotions, be gentle and encouraging with him. Ask him questions that help him open up, and express gratitude when he does—even if his feelings are difficult for you to hear. Give him positive reinforcement when he does talk about his feelings so that he knows he's safe with you.

Lack of communication can ruin a relationship, so this is definitely an area to work on for any couples in which talking about feelings is difficult. Here are a few ways to boost emotional intelligence.


Men don't know what women want

But here's the thing: Nobody knows what anybody wants—unless they get told directly. Like anyone else, men are not mind-readers. If you don't tell someone what you want, how can you expect them to know?

If you feel like your partner is not meeting your needs or giving you the things you want in a relationship, talk to him about it. It's very well possible that he doesn't know what your expectations or desires are, and a conversation about it can make all the difference. Don't expect him to "just know."


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The male brain is not a mystery

Understanding men is not about reading up everything there is to know about "male psychology"—because, at the end of the day, your man is different from other men. Even general trends in male behavior are just trends, and there will always be outliers. If you want to know what a man wants in a relationship, just ask him.

In general, though, just remember: Men are just like any other human being. They want to be complimented, taken care of, challenged, listened to, and loved just like the rest of us.


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What Do Men Need From Women? 5 Insights

How many times have you felt upset by something your male partner said or didn’t say, did or didn’t do and then found yourself concluding that whatever the issue it results from his very maleness, from the sheer fact that he is a man, that he simply "can’t help it?"

Certain notes are sounded again and again when women talk about trouble with their men: “But you know, that’s how men are” or “He’s a man after all, it's not his fault” or “Men!” Typically the women listening nod and laugh, bursting with agreement.

These and other platitudes are recited as a way to minimize their distress and frustration. However, this tendency to dismiss males as genetically deficient reinforces for them the idea that it is not safe to fully be themselves with their female partners.

It is important to note research consistently demonstrates that men and women are more alike than different, share an almost identical brain structure, similar needs for achievement and connection, and generally want the same things out of life. The differences are in nuance and, although important, should not be used to relegate men to some far-removed, distant space in the universe that normal people, i.e., women, find inhospitable.

Men are socialized beginning in boyhood to conform to what the culture values as masculine. This includes being in control of one's emotions, winning at all costs, and not showing vulnerability. Men who do not wholeheartedly conform are often stigmatized socially and may be viewed by others as "feminine" in some vague way. Men who display vulnerability may be called a “sissy” or, currently in fashion, a “vagina.”

Research suggests that men who feel they must rigidly conform to masculine gender norms are more likely to suppress emotions that make them feel vulnerable. These are the very emotions required for emotional intimacy with a romantic partner.

As women, we often reinforce the same gender conditioning that pushes men away. A more effective approach is to buffer this harsh cultural reality by keeping these five points in mind.

1. He deeply wants you to like him and to love him for himself and not just what he can do for you.

Male socialization teaches that their value is in their agency—that is in their ability to act, take charge, control, win, achieve—lest he receive the "sissy" scorn. Do not let this superficial part of him mislead you.

Underneath this conditioning is a child who, just like you, wants to feel loved for who he is. He desires someone who can be okay with him even when he is not winning, producing, or "on top. " He may not be able to tell you this, so when he is feeling "not good enough" you may not even know it. Unlike women, men have more difficulty talking about their "weaker" emotions.

If you keep this key in mind, you may notice other important things about him. How funny he is. How nice it is to spend time with him. How you like talking with him about your day. Open the dialogue up to his essence, not merely his prowess.

2. He wants you to like yourself.

If you are using him to feel okay about yourself, it will never be enough and you will constantly be in search of the next boost. He experiences this as a form of dependency. It can become burdensome to the point where he is not free to be his authentic self.

In addition, there is typically a correlation between how much women are unaccepting of themselves and their tendency to criticize and hyper-control the man in their life. This is because people tend to project characteristics onto others that reflect themselves. In other words, if you are unhappy with yourself, you may be overly critical of him.

As a rule of thumb, the feedback to your significant other should be 75 percent positive, 25 percent negative. If the ratio is reversed, you are triggering Kryptonite for a lot of men and it makes them feel endlessly nagged and criticized. When this is the case, they acquire a sense that they can "never get it right." This, invariably, leads them to tune out and avoid the woman in their life.

3. He wants you to believe in his ability to communicate.

News flash: It turns out all that propaganda about men not being able to communicate is wrong, men actually can communicate. “Men are from Mars,” “Men are Neanderthals,” these phrases reinforce the stereotype that men cannot talk about their feeling or motives with more than a fourth-grade point of view. These descriptors also further reinforce male adoption of the idea that if they do communicate more vulnerable thoughts or emotions, they may be stigmatized as too soft.

If you find yourself saying things like this, stop and give him a chance. Yes, women are more verbal—they typically talk about their feelings more quickly and succinctly than men. But men do know what they think and feel. Instead of shaming him, when you can tell he is trying to express something vulnerable take him seriously, ask questions. Be sure to thank him for trying to talk to you on this level. Trust me, if you do this, he will talk more and you will see that under his exterior of manliness is a man who speaks articulately and has feelings very similar to you.

4. He wants you to be playful.

Not to generalize because all women are different, but many are masters at organization, multitasking, and "taking care of business." It can be a little too easy when around your partner to talk mostly about the agenda for this day or the next day, what needs to be done, etc.

He wants to see you let go of control and be spontaneous, playful, and in the moment with him. His love has an opportunity to deepen when you engage him without agendas and controls. He feels as if he is a real person who you see and hear and not just a piece you move on your chessboard of tasks.

5. He wants you to know that boys do cry.

Deep down, just like you, men are vulnerable beings. Do not punish or minimize if you see even a hint of sadness; let him have his moment. He may or may not cry, and certainly men are typically socialized to cry less than women. However, it is important for his negative emotions to be validated and heard. Boys and men are given so much shame in our culture for being vulnerable that they are often left with only one choice to vent negative feelings—anger.

Offer him one place in the world where he can unconditionally bring his full self to the table and where you don’t judge. Don’t talk him out of his fears or upset; offer compassion and understanding—two important qualities that men do not get enough of throughout childhood and adulthood.

When you find yourself trying to understand something he says that you find unacceptable, stop, breathe, and remember: Deep down most men want what women want—acceptance of who they are, love, and positive reinforcement for what they do well and for what they are trying to contribute.

Copyright Jill Weber Ph.D.

Men's psychology: how a woman understands the second half

Photo: Freepick

Is it difficult to reach mutual understanding with a partner? The fact is that male psychology is different from female. Therefore, the couple may have misunderstandings. It is possible to correct the situation. Psychologists Alexander Shakhov and Nikolai Kozlov explain what goes on in a man's head.

Men are the exact opposite of women

This basic truth is often hard to accept. Women expect from men normal, from their point of view, understandable behavior. But our actions are largely dictated by the hormonal background, which is fundamentally different for men and women. nine0005

Social psychologist Alexander Shakhov recalls that:

  1. When women experience empathy (under the influence of the hormone oxytocin), men do not feel it (they release very little oxytocin).
  2. When a woman feels scared (due to low testosterone, adrenaline is produced), a man becomes angry (high testosterone helps to produce norepinephrine).

Therefore, it is important for a woman to understand that a man's reaction will not be the same as hers. Observe, ask questions, and show attention to your partner instead of resentment. nine0005

Men can't read minds

Girls want their wishes to be fulfilled automatically. Most women long for a man to give flowers every day, present exactly what they have wanted for a birthday, meet them from work with dinner, and not pester them when they are tired.

The list is endless. When a man does not live up to expectations, resentment arises.

What do men think about in this case? The paradox is that they do not understand what women want. They seem to know common truths, but they constantly forget about them. Therefore, another tantrum of a lady because of the wrong gift makes a man perplexed. nine0005

Women should learn this truth: if you want something, say it directly. Men do not understand hints, as N. I. Kozlov, Doctor of Psychological Sciences, professor, rector of the University of Practical Psychology, emphasizes.

Men want to be in charge

How to understand a man: Freepick

It happens that a woman wants to take a leading role in a relationship. Because of this, conflicts inevitably arise in a couple. A rare representative of the stronger sex will allow a woman to decide for him in a pair. nine0005

Hand over the reins to your loved one with subtlety and precision. Remember the statement, proven over the centuries: a man is a head, and a woman is a neck. Recognize male dominance and rejoice in it.

Men love business and dislike emotions

A man cuts off emotions and feelings when discussing a problem. If at such a moment a woman turns on her emotions and talks about her relationship, thoughts, what she thinks and how she experiences, then the man gets annoyed.

To make such misunderstandings less frequent:

  1. Ask the man to warn that there will be a business conversation.
  2. If during a conversation with a loved one you want to dream aloud, then warn about it so that the man does not feel guilty and does not get angry.

Men do not admit weakness and will not ask for help

From childhood, a man is taught that he should be the head of the family, a breadwinner and a strong personality. Boys are shamed when they cry and show emotion. As a result, an adult man gets used to keeping everything in himself. nine0005

If a guy can't handle something, it's hard for him to admit it. He will never ask for help, especially from a woman who is weaker than him. Such is male psychology and upbringing.

Psychologist NI Kozlov advises women:

  1. If a man asked for help, then he needs it. Do as he asks. Act gently, tolerantly, in no case criticize or nag a man.
  2. If a man does not ask for help, do not impose.

Support your loved one in his decisions and accept his position. Let your man feel and know that you believe in him and support him in any situation.

Men love compliments

It turns out that not only women love with their ears. American writer Steve Harvey in the book "You Know Nothing About Men" writes that the representatives of the stronger sex love compliments and rave reviews. They may concern:

  • appearance;
  • clothing and accessories; nine0014
  • car;
  • achievements in work and hobbies.

The more you praise your loved one, the more tender he will be with you.

Men appreciate care

Secrets of male psychology: Freepick

Men see their partner as the keeper of the hearth. It is important for them that the house is always clean, the clothes are kept in order, and a delicious dinner is waiting for them in the evening.

Guys sometimes don't understand that a woman gets tired too and doesn't always want to mess around in the kitchen. There is a way out of this situation: you can order food at home. The main thing is to share a meal with your loved one and ask about how his day went. nine0005

Men need personal space

Women want their beloved to be by their side every second of their free time. This is especially true when starting a relationship.

Guys, however, need their own space. What do men love? Disappear in the garage, drink beer with friends, play computer games. They do it because they need a reset and a rest.

Do not forbid a man to be alone with himself or friends. Agree on a time that you will spend separately. nine0005

Men appreciate not only appearance, but also the inner world

If you are thinking about how to interest a man, then remember that a deep neckline and a short skirt will not surprise anyone. This is if you dream of a serious relationship.

Representatives of the stronger sex perceive the female image as a whole. Already on the first date, they analyze whether a woman can become a worthy companion. The defiant image is more likely to scare the guy away. Conquer a man with charisma, a sense of humor and intelligence. nine0005

A man is a hunter by nature

How to make a man fall in love with you? Play the role of prey, and let him be the hunter. Do not impose, keep a certain mystery, but do not go too far with impregnability.

Is it worth calling a man if he is missing? There is no exact answer to this question, since it is necessary to proceed from a specific situation. A person could lose his phone, get sick or go on a business trip.

There are also other options: the man didn't like you, he was afraid of responsibility, etc. You won't know the real reason until you contact the object of interest. It is better to call yourself than to suffer from the unknown. nine0005

These are the tips for those who want to understand men. Do not forget about differences in psychology and perception of the world by representatives of different sexes. A frank conversation will help clarify all the problematic.

Original article:

Male psychology in relationships love through the eyes of a partner👁‍🗨🤎

Water and stone, poetry and prose, Mars and Venus, yin and yang - almost the entire conscious history of the "female" way of thinking is opposed to the "male". And not without reason - our body works differently, we are brought up differently, and society still puts forward different requirements for people, depending on gender. Of course, in our enlightened age, talking about opposition is not quite right. It would be more correct to say that the thinking of men and women is different. nine0005

Anticipating objections - yes, there are sensitive men and punchy women. And in general, each person is unique and unique. But in most cases, a man is less sensitive and more ambitious than a woman, all other things being equal. And here are some tips for women who want a healthy relationship with a man.

Water and stone, poetry and prose, Mars and Venus, yin and yang - almost the entire conscious history of the "female" way of thinking is opposed to the "male"

Remember that you have different needs

Yes, everyone is looking for love and respect in a relationship, but a man understands them differently from a woman. For example, when a man feels bad, he will prefer to withdraw into himself, to be alone with the problem in his personal space. Superman, an archetypal man, has such a space where he indulges in thoughts about the fate of the world, and it is called the Fortress of Solitude. More than a transparent hint of privacy. For earthly men, tree houses and various “hooks” become such fortresses, and at a more mature age - any space where they will not be disturbed. If you live together, give him the opportunity to have such space. nine0005

If you see that your man is in a bad mood, ask if everything is all right. Once. Don't ask and don't ask. Leave him alone with his problems for a while. Want to share - listen. If you don't want to, forget it.

More about love and respect – the latter is more important for a man. Silent respect is not the best way. Make it clear that you notice and appreciate the masculine qualities of your chosen one. Men, contrary to stereotypes, love compliments, just not all women do them right. By the way, if a man does not write to you after a date, this does not mean that he is indifferent to you. nine0125 We have already written about this.

First, be sincere. Complimenting "his broad shoulders" will confuse an intelligent "nerd", but praising his intelligence and insight is a good idea.

Second , be specific. "You have a great sense of humor" - good. “I always smile around you and I’m so glad that you don’t let me get discouraged” - wonderful.

Thirdly, - without manipulation. nine0125 Compliment to compliment.

You say that the bag from Brand X's latest collection is a delight, and that the turquoise bathroom tile looks very peaceful. The man will hear and conclude that the bag is good and the tiles are beautiful. Everything.

He will not imagine how effectively a bag will match shoes, and tiles will make your bathroom cozier. Even if you repeat twenty more times. He will simply begin to react to the irritant - frown, agree, change the topic of conversation. nine0005

Don't be annoying, be rational. Tell him what you need and what you want to help him. And it's not just about everyday things - speak directly about your relationships, joys and sorrows, plans and dreams. And then a miracle will happen - the man will listen to you and, most likely, will hear.

Another kind of behavior that irritates men is the silence. "What happened?" - "Nothing!". You wait for a man to guess your desires, but you do not wait. Instead of being open in a relationship with your man, for example, when he doesn’t call or write for a long time, for some reason you continue to pretend that everything is in order, and not talk about what “I was going through”, “I had unpleasant” or “I don’t understand why you disappeared for so long.” nine0005

Everything is solved in the same way - with words. Unambiguous and clear. Only without accusations - just tell him how you feel and offer to work together to find a solution to the problem.

Men do not change

You either accept a person as he is - with all the wear and tear and intracranial cockroaches, or you are looking for another person. Trying to remake someone is violence against him and against himself. If someone suits you in principle, only to correct here and tighten up there - he does not suit you. nine0005

You can inspire a man to become better in what he has the beginnings of. The average seller is quite capable of becoming a sales shark, a small businessman is an industry leader, and so on. That's all your powers are.

A homebody will not become a secular lion, a lyricist will not become a physicist, a cat will not become a dog. Yes, there are exceptions. A person changes from within, if he sincerely desires it. Not because you asked or convinced, but even begged on your knees, but because he needed it. For example, in the circle of people who are being treated for addictions, there is the concept of "bottom". nine0005

The “bottom” is the realization (often through a shocking event) that a person lives wrong or, if we are talking about chemically addicts, almost no longer lives. After the "bottom" a person can start working on himself. And even get better. But not for someone else, but only for yourself.

By the way, if you are trying to “save” an alcoholic, drug addict, game addict or some other destructively addicted person, then, firstly, read our material about Karpman's triangle , and secondly, contact the Al-Anon community - most likely, you have become codependent, and you need to be treated already.

Do not drown him in emotions

Men cope with emotions worse than women. Psychology professor Ann Kring conducted a study that showed that women express emotions much more vividly. Men avoid complex manifestations of feelings because they do not understand what to do with them. When you ask: "Well, where is our relationship going," you leave the man in confusion, which is replaced by fear of the incomprehensible and unknown. nine0125 When you make a scene of jealousy or say something like: “I think I like you more than you like me”, he doesn't know how to react. And in any incomprehensible situation, a man leaves an incomprehensible situation.

Be clearer - say that you are sad, or anxious, or bored - just one thing at a time. So the man will understand you.

Men cope with emotions worse than women. Psychology professor Ann Kring conducted a study that showed that women express emotions much more vividly

Let him be in charge

Women often take on the role of helpers for their chosen ones. Remind them not to forget an important meeting and eat right. They write reports for them, wash the car, listen to how difficult it is to find a job because of the economic situation, world injustice or evil spirits.

A woman expects a man to love her even more because she actively supports him in a difficult situation. But often the opposite happens. A man begins to abuse support, because it is very convenient. And the woman bears her cross, holds all the responsibility for the relationship on her shoulders and helps, helps, helps. nine0005

In fact, such “help” is a desire to deprive a partner of independence. The main indicator of the "prudence" of such assistants is that they never help to the end, but "hook" on their help. For example, teach a guy once to iron a shirt, fill out some kind of receipt. Or help him find a good job and not be financially dependent.

Be honest with yourself - do you need a comfortable couch potato who is easy to push around with guilt, or a self-sufficient adult partner with whom you have to compromise? nine0005

Do not judge

If you remind your partner of his sins at every opportunity, then he thinks like this: “No matter what I do, she will never forgive me for that incident anyway. Anything good I do, she will take as an excuse." Do you want someone to make you think like this?

If you return to the situation to remind a man how wrong he is and how he suffered once again, this is cruel and senseless. It is worth returning when you want to close the issue once and for all. But first ask yourself: why do I want to remind him of the past so much, what's in it for me? Satisfaction that I am so strong and endure it all, or do I want him to twist like a rope? nine0005

If you want to convey something to a man, do it less painfully. It's not easy, but try to find something else that can give you that feeling of self-confidence and stop being afraid of losing the relationship. And, of course, it is important that the partner is involved in the situation. If he respects your distrust and feelings at the moment and is ready to help you somehow cope with this, then your couple has a chance to survive.

We hope that now it will become easier for you to communicate with men, as it is for them to communicate with you. If now the guy is not - it does not matter. Look how many cool series and books we have written for you. And you can always find a gentleman. Especially now, when it is enough to fill out a questionnaire on invme.

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