He Just Doesn’t Get It: Three Wives Share Their Views On Insensitive Husbands
Q: “My husband and I had a row the other day. He apologized, but I’m giving him the silent treatment because I feel as if he still doesn’t know the reason why I’m angry. Will he ever learn?”
ANA: Men have low EQ! Trust me, they can’t read emotions. Now if you give him the silent treatment, you will just die of sama ng loob. So you better spill it out. Tell him how you really feel and why you’re angry. If you’re not good at verbalizing your feelings (as in saying it straight to his face), try sending him a text, Facebook or Viber message…sometimes, men can internalize it more seeing written words.
BELLE: From my experience (and having been married for seven years), men will never know the specifics of why you’re angry. Here’s an idea: give yourself some time to simmer down, and when you’re finally ready to talk, sit him down and explain why you got mad at him. And don’t get offended by his innocent “Oh, you’re still angry? I thought we’re past that,” face. Seriously, sometimes, Men. Don’t have. A clue. When he fully understands just how you’ve been offended, he will give you a sincere apology. Accept, then move on.
CATHY: I pick my battles and as the popular song goes, I let it go. He did apologize already, so no sense giving him the silent treatment. It will only make YOU unhappy, which isn’t the purpose of your silent treatment, right? But if his apology doesn’t sound sincere, then you should tell him calmly about how you feel. Control your feelings. Raising your voice will only make it worse. Remember, two wrongs do not make a right.
Q: “Sometimes I feel that my husband takes me for granted. How do I make him more sensitive to my emotional needs?”
ANA: He takes you for granted? Take him for granted as well! Let’s see if he can cook his food. LOL. Kidding aside, I think the best way to get your message across is to open up about it when you’ve just done something that tugs at his heartstrings or made him kilig… say, after eating the delicious breakfast that you so lovingly prepared, or while you’re giving him a hot massage. Say something like, “Babe, I wish you’d be more sensitive about how I feel. Remember that one time when…” That way, you can be sure that you got his attention and he’s listening.
BELLE: While men might have their default ‘macho’ exterior, I don’t think they are completely oblivious to your feelings. They might just be showing it in different ways, say, when you tell them that you have a problem at work, they might crack a joke, hoping to ease the tension. Again, it’s better if you tell them that you just want them to listen, and clearly state what you expect from them.
CATHY: Oh dear, men will always take us for granted, the way they took their mothers for granted. They expect us to be like their moms, but we’re not, and they don’t know that. So, sit him down and tell him how you feel, and what is expected of him. If he still doesn’t get it, then tell him every single time. Men cannot read our minds, the same way we can’t read theirs.
Q: “Whenever I cry in the middle of an argument, he walks away. I feel that he thinks I am using it to make him apologize, but I’m not.”
ANA: If he walks away, then let him. Truth is, he can’t deal with the sight of you crying, and that is why he’s leaving. So don’t take it against him. Take this as an opportunity for him to think things over, realize his mistakes, and find it in his heart to apologize. Then while he’s at it, you can contain your emotions while dancing along to Justin Bieber’s Sorry, while eating some chocolates. (You’ll need that to stimulate the release of endorphins.) Then when hubby gets home, you’d be ready to kiss, make up… and you know what’s next.
BELLE: We’re wired to be emotional and it can sometimes get overwhelming for our husbands. He might be feeling helpless or defensive—either way, if he walks away once, that’s fine, but make sure to tell him later the reason behind your tears. Our tears aren’t weapons we use to make things go our way, but rather a sign of vulnerability. Next time, when he sees you tearing up, maybe you can ask him to hold you until you stop crying. That would make both of you calm down and make you resolve your arguments faster.
CATHY: Tears are bound to weaken him, like any man. But there is a reason why you are crying, and you didn’t cry for nothing. He has to realize this, that there is a cause and an effect. He must have done or said something to make you cry, and you might have said something to hurt him, too! So always stay calm when you’re in an argument to avoid this from happening.
About the Authors:
Ana works in a multinational company and enjoys fitness marathons with her husband.
Belle is a work-at-home mom with a homeschooled daughter. A decision agreed upon with her husband.
Cathy opted to be an entrepreneur, so she can manage her time to take care of her husband and four children.
Got issues you want them to discuss? Write to mwm@ abs-cbn.com, with the subject “Coffee Break.”