Often when women are casually dating or moving towards a committed relationship, we hesitate to share our thoughts and feelings with the man due to the fear of coming across as needy and clingy. Why? Usually out of fear this will push him away. However by not freely expressing ourselves, we run into the danger of not having our needs met and eventually building anger and resentment. This is highly destructive to the relationship.
Typically, women are more open, expressive and emotional in their communications within a romantic relationship than their male counterparts are. We connect by sharing our feelings with our significant other, though fear of coming across clingy or needy often holds us back from opening up.
On the flip side, by not being comfortable enough to share our thoughts and feelings openly and honestly we may rob ourselves of the deep intimate connection we seek. Over time we may watch our relationship unravel from pent up resentment and anger. Sharing too little or too much can be a fine line we walk with our partners.
So what can we do about this?
Here are five tips on how to share your thoughts, fears, feelings, and insecurities with your partner in order to deepen your commitment and connection and build a happy, healthy relationship.
- Define your goal. What is the purpose of opening up to your partner? What are you ultimately hoping to change or accomplish? Know exactly what you want from the start. In open, honest, and authentic relationships, very little is hidden from one another.
- Timing is everything. Don’t expect to get your man’s full attention, for example, when his favorite sports team is on television, when he’s just gotten home from work, or when he’s heading out the door. Before diving into a touchy subject, ask your mate if it is a good time to talk and if not then, when.
- Location, location, location. Making sure that you are in a place that is private, comfortable, and void of distractions should make the sharing of intimate thoughts and feelings more successful. The more controversial the topic to be discussed, the more careful you should be with “where” it occurs so that he’ll be more receptive.
- Be respectful. No personal attacks, yelling, or name calling. If he is doing something that bothers you, be sure to address only the behavior and not attack him as a person. Talk to your significant other as you would your boss or best friend.
- The “how” is just as important as the “what”. The content of a message—the actual words—make up only 7% of what is communicated. Most of what is expressed comes from body language, tone, and facial expressions. Being calm, factual, and prepared will help convey love, caring, and safety to help your partner be more open to what you have to say.
Use the tips above to develop solid communication skills for better conversational outcomes. Respect for your partner’s desires, feelings, and state of mind will increase the chances of him being open to hearing you and participating in the discussion.
Contrary to popular belief, men do want to hear how their women feel—they aren’t mind readers—so a little insight can go a long way in building a blissful relationship.
Are you comfortable sharing your feelings with your significant other? What works best for you? Please feel free to share your perspective with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.