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Saying I Love You Is Probably More Difficult For Men

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Saying I Love You Is Probably More Difficult For Men

Saying i love you

In marriage or after a divorce in a new relationship, one of the questions women always ask is, if he feels love, why does he find saying I love you so difficult? It can become a communication problem. Just because your husband is afraid to say “I love you” doesn’t mean he doesn’t. And pressuring him to say it isn’t going to make him want to say it any sooner.

So what’s going on? Why do men have a problem with saying I love you?  Most men feel self-worth based on how much responsibility they can take on, but feel a threat to self-worth if they take on responsibility and then disappoint people. Part of their hesitation in saying I love you, is that it starts them subconsciously down the road to increasing responsibility with the next steps being: “Let’s live together,” “Let’s get engaged,” “Let’s get married,” “Let’s have kids,” “Let’s buy a house.” This sequence makes sense from the woman’s point of view when building a family and life together. (It is actually analogous to how a man builds his career, i.e. get the job, told you’re doing a good job, expect raise and/or promotion, expect bigger and better titles, etc.)

Here’s the problem. If the man has already had failures in his life — with marriage,divorce, guilt about kids now coming from broken home, child and spousal support, etc. — he is hesitant to add more commitments to the list of things where he thinks there is a likelihood that he will disappoint even more people.

What to do with this insight? Check it out with your man to see if it is true. If it is and if you show you understand him, he may be able to exhale and when he exhales and relaxes into your understanding it will replace his feeling tense when he feels pressured by you. Exhaling and then relaxing will open his mind and create more mind space to see how he can take on more responsibilities without getting freaked out. Because you have been empathic and understanding vs. nagging him, he will feel grateful and be more likely to show generosity to you by making more commitments.

He may even start saying I love you.  And best of all, he’ll mean it.
(c) 2014 Mark Goulston

Authors’ Books and Kindle – Click for Amazon Reviews

Mark Goulston, M.D. is a business advisor, consultant, speaker, trainer and coach trained as a clinical psychiatrist who honed his skills as an FBI/police hostage negotiation trainer who increases people’s ability to get through to anyone.

He is Co- Founder of Heartfelt Leadership whose Mission is: Daring to Care and Go Positive Now and is the Resident Big Brother at Business Women Rising and serves on the Board of Advisers of American Women Veterans and Dr. Oz’ foundation, Health Corps.

He is the author of international best selling book, “Just Listen” Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone (AMACOM, $24.95) which has reached #1 at amazon kindle in six business categories, #1 in China and Germany , #1 in audible audiobooks and has been translated into fourteen languages. Dr. Goulston and his book was also a PBS special entitled “Just Listen with Dr. Mark Goulston.” His next book, REAL INFLUENCE: Persuade Without Pushing and Gain Without Giving In, co-authored with Dr. John Ullment will be the lead book for the American Management Association in January, 2013 and will focus on influencing people in a post-selling world.

Dr. Goulston’s development of those skills started with his education: a B.A. from UC Berkeley, an M.D. from Boston University, post graduate residency in psychiatry at UCLA. He went on to be a professor at UCLA’s internationally renowned Neuropsychiatric Institute for more than twenty years, become a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and was named one of America’s Top Psychiatrists for 2004-2005 and again in 2009 and 2011 by Washington, D.C. based Consumers’ Research Council of America.

A partial list of companies, organizations and universities he has trained, spoken to, provided executive coaching to or consulted with include: GE, IBM, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, Xerox, Deutsche Bank, Hyatt, Accenture, Astra Zenica, British Airways, Sodexo, ESPN, Kodak, Federal Express, YPO, YPOWPO India, Association for Corporate Growth, FBI, Los Angeles District Attorney, White & Case, Seyfarth Shaw, UCLA Anderson School of Management, USC, Pepperdine University.

He is or has been a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors and the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches and is the best selling author of four prior books including the international best seller, Get Out of Your Own Way: Overcoming Self-Defeating Behavior (Perigee, $13.95) Get Out of Your Own Way at Work…and Help Others Do the Same (Perigee, $14.95), is a contributor to Harvard Business, blogs for the Huffington Post, Business Insider writes the Tribune media syndicated column, Solve Anything with Dr. Mark, column on leadership for FAST COMPANY, Directors Monthly. He is frequently called upon to share his expertise with regard to contemporary business, national and world news by television, radio and print media including: Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Newsweek, Time, Los Angeles Times, ABC/NBC/CBS/Fox/CNN/BBC News, Oprah, Today.

Dr. Goulston lives in Los Angeles with his wife and three children.

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