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Dr. Paige
Dr. Paige, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1371
Experience:  Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist
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my wife thinks that I am not a feeling person. She has asked

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my wife thinks that I am not a feeling person. She has asked me to come up with new ideas to help improve our communication and feel more connected. What can I tell her that will make a difference?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 11 months ago.
Hello. Women in general are much more emotional and show their feelings more than men, so sometimes there can be problems when women expect men to act more like women. This is what it sounds like she is trying to do. There is a happy medium somewhere and you have to find it. What women are looking for, is for men to notice things without them having to say anything to them about it. For example, if she is struggling to get things done around the house to maybe get ready for people coming over, helping her without asking her if she needs help would be a huge thing. If something is bothering her, she will expect you to know what it is and act accordingly without asking her what's wrong. These are the things women want from men. A lot of the time, men can't do these things because it is in the mans' nature to be more direct with an approach and do tend to be more self centered in their thinking. That isn't a knock on men, it's the general truth in how each gender handles things. She may be looking for words because she mentioned communication, but my professional guess is that she is more concerned with actions. Noticing things without having to be asked or told she needs help or support or whatever the specific situation is.
If she is a spontaneous person, do something spontaneous. Ask a lot of questions. If she wants more communication, ask her how her day was. When she talks about it, ask her more questions about it. Ask her how she feels about this or that, it doesn't have to be relationship based at all, just general day to day things which may seem mundane to you. Thing which seem small and insignificant to you will be huge for her. She will look for the details in your actions.
You know her well and I just saw a brief question about her, so it's difficult to be very specific without knowing her like you do. My advice would be to think carefully and deeply about things and act on those things. Remember that she sees things differently than you do, so try to have a different perspective about daily subjects.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

Thanks for your response. I feel like I've tried to be more communicative. Its difficult because she is a clinical psychologist and I I don't feel like I'm on the same level of sophistication in the things I bring up to her. I'm having trouble coming at her with new ideas. She is always saying think outside of the box. You're right she has said that she wants to see more action. We've had alot of relationship trouble of late and I just am scrambling thinking of ways to reach her before its too late. I am tired of letting her down.

Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 11 months ago.
You should be blunt with her and tell her that you love her very much, she means everything to you and ASK her to help you. Her initial response might be that you should know, she shouldn't have to show you, but tell her you are honestly having some difficulty with this.
Regardless of her education and profession, you should never have to feel as though you are not on her level. You both chose each other for who you are, not what you do for work. She should have a hand in this as well, it should not be 100% on you to fix things. Be very positive and caring and living with her, but ask her for help. If she wants to make this work as well, she should be willing to meet you a bit in the middle.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

I think that's part of the problem. I've told her that I love her very much. I've told her that she is everything to me. That's the stuff that she finds repetitive. She wants me to say something different but in reality she needs to see action. Its like she wants immediate results but these days is so quick to judge. I am far from blameless. We have had ongoing relationship problems and its still really early in our marriage. I love her and am trying to make her feel special but I feel like I am coming up short in words and my grand gestures to make her feel special (taking her on special trips, cards, letters, etc.) just don't seem to work. I've mentioned counseling to her before and she has said that the counselor will tell us that we shouldn't be together. I'm sorry if this is so scatterbrained. There is just alot going on right now and it feels very critical - like I only have a day or a couple days to make a difference. I feel desperate. I really appreciate your input.

Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 11 months ago.
I understand the desperation that you feel, but I can't help but have the position that she is not being helpful either. Regardless of her profession, I want to say that maybe she needs more for validation in her own life than what most women who feel good about themselves would. Again, this is only through this forum, so it's hard to say. Even if you completely messed up the relationship in one way or another, it is unfair of her to expect you to be scrambling around to save everything. She should be open to change and allow you to be able to make the changes she is looking for. Any issue and repairs will be some of both of you, regardless of who is at fault. If she expects all of these things from you, she MUST acknowledge the effort or else it won't work at all.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

You've been extremely helpful. I know its a rather open ended question but the question will come up when I talk to her today about what ideas and what plan I have for us. She feels like our relationship has been one sided. Like she does all the work and is tired of waiting for me to change. I think the hardest part for me is that when we speak in person. I'm reduced to a stuttering stammering mess. She feels like she's heard everything that I have to say and to a certain extent she's right. I don't know what to tell her that my actions wouldn't show better but yet she's always asking me if I have anything to say for myself. I love her and I hate seeing her so unhappy. I've never cursed at her or said a mean thing to her but she has said that she thinks that I am abusive (I'm guessing emotionally). I just want to have something new to say or do for her and I am out of ideas right now. Is there anything you could suggest?

Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 11 months ago.
You really should not have to feel so uncomfortable in your own relationship. I know those are just words and easier said than done. Just explain to her you are trying and that you really need for her to be more patient with you. To be honest, I do think she has some of her own issues based on what you say. I have seen this pattern before and the level of validation she wants is suspiciously like some women who can never be happy. I hope for your sake, she is not one of those women. You will never ever be able to satisfy her no matter how hard you try and it won't be your fault at all. I would watch for those signs as well with her if I were you. All you can do is try your best. She has you feeling like you need to do a million things and nothing is good enough. She has you in a panic about the relationship and that is not fair for her to do, even if mot of whatever problems are your fault. You both need to work together. Keep talking to her and just do your best, XXXXX XXXXX you can do. If you know in your heart how you feel and the efforts you have taken, you have done all you can do. She HAS to be open to accepting this. She just does. This is not 100% your responsibility.
Dr. Paige, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1371
Experience: Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist
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