Men in our society are typically taught a number of myths about relationships that can be very damaging. Many of these lessons are subconscious. We are not aware that we are treating our partner in a different way because of these influences, or that we are presenting ourselves in a way that can be counterproductive to what we actually want to achieve in a situation. Here are the top three myths about relationships we see most men recognize, and then learn to overcome in our Couples Workshops.
Myth Number 1:
My partner can meet all of my emotional needs.
Men often hold an expectation that they can meet their emotional needs through just one person or their immediate family, however these expectations are unrealistic. Men have a variety of emotional needs: respect, productivity, closeness, procreation, potency, power, compassion, fun, and joy are just a few. There are times that we get all these needs jumbled together and then expect our beloved to know what we need and give it to us. Usually there’s also an expectation of mind reading at work.
In the Getting the Love You Want Workshop, we learn that our partners are completely different people with their own judgements, opinions, defensive reactions, strengths and weaknesses, and when we run up against frustration with our partners, we are running into the belief that the partner should be more like us. They should be more: (fill in the blank). If they would do THIS, then our frustrations would magically vanish.
Our needs are complex, and when we expect our partners to be able to read our minds, meet all of these needs, and carry premonitions for us, we set up a recipe for failure. Our partners will never fully be able to be themselves in relationship with us, until we help create space in our interactions for their emergence as authentic human beings and acceptance for who they are. The skills and processes in the workshop are specifically designed to help you navigate this.
Myth Number 2:
Expressing frustration is the way to create change.
Men often use a spontaneous expression of frustration or rage to get what they want, but this just creates more problems by making the focus of all the problems US. Dedicating the time to learn to express our emotions to our partners and family by ratcheting back the frustration and anger and expressing ourselves more authenticity can make a world of difference in our personal and relational happiness. Owning our feelings of sadness, isolation, insecurity and the whole range of emotions that encompass our full humanity, is the only way to move forward in a relationship or marriage. You can and will learn the value of strength as well as vulnerability.
Myth Number 3:
I can fix it!
This is a big one we see in the Getting the Love You Want Workshop. It is an often deeply engrained mentality for Men. Jump in and take action. In certain situations, this is great! However, this can be off putting to our partners when they are just looking to have a conversation, or when they simply have a need to be heard and seen. It is important to learn to slow down, reflect more and react less. Any important relationship requires care and nurturance. Preparation is the best strategy. If you know there will be times of conflict and misunderstanding, you can be ready to handle those times using the skills provided in the workshop. You can be the best husband, father, or partner that you can be. The skills work, if you work the skills.
Or for more information about our Self-Investment Groups for men, contact Bob at email@example.com
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