Imagine your wife is telling you about her day and a problem she came across. As she's talking you feel like there is an obvious solution to her problem. You may ask yourself, "Why hasn't she already solved this problem? The answer is so obvious!" Well the answer to that is she probably has already thought of the solution; she just wants to tell you how she's feeling and share her experiences with you.
Sometimes men think it will be best to just jump in and solve their wife's problem, but in reality, she simply wants you to listen. Here are ten things she just wants you to listen to instead of "fix":
1. How her day went
Whether it was a good or bad day, your wife is excited to see you at the end of her day. She wants to share her experiences with you. Sometimes she'll tell you about her concerns among the good things that happened that day. Just like a funny story, she wants you to listen to her concerns. She wants you to know what she's thinking and how she feels. Listening to these concerns instead of fixing them is the best way to show her that you care about what she cares about.
2. The kids
She's worried about the kids, and she doesn't want to hear the solutions you have already thought of first. She wants to share how she feels about them, then she'll be open to your opinions.
"Most parents just want someone to listen to their experiences without judgment," Kelsey Crowe says. She is looking to you to be that person who will listen without judgment. Fixing the problem right away makes her feel like you are judging her parenting skills.
3. Her hair
It could be an expression of how crazy her hair is or a criticism of another body part; She wants to express her frustration and feel your empathy and understanding about her looks rather than receiving skin care advice - she is already getting that from her sister.
Then you say: "We may [bu-rrp] have some rat poison in the basement."
Funny comments are great, just be sure to follow it up with a question of concern. Again, she wants to share her experiences with you and what she is going through; this is only possible if you listen.
5. Her friends
You may not like her friends, but they are a big part of your wife's life. Let her know that you care what she cares about. This means even listening to her friends drama.
She is already giving them advice, so unless she asks you what advice you have for them, it might be better to listen to how she's feeling about all of this drama. Listening to the drama helps your wife know that you care about what she has to deal with.
6. Her cooking
If she is trying to make a good meal for you, build her up, especially if she doesn't cook often. It is easier than you think. Instead of feeling like you have to come up with 100 new compliments every time she cooks, ask her how she made it. She wants to share these amazing experiences with you.
7. Her mistakes
We all make mistakes, but we don't want to feel like terrible people for it. Listening to her shows you aren't judging her for messing up. It allows you to become her safe place. You will be the person she feels like she can go to when she doesn't feel good about herself.
8. Her wardrobe
The classic "Does this dress make me look fat?" is actually very common. Instead of just saying no, you will win major brownie points for adding "Not at all, but how do you feel in it?" This will show her you care about her comfort more than how she looks.
Money is a tricky one because you are both worried about making ends meet. I'm not saying you can't ever offer solutions, but sharing the worry first will help your money problems lessen. Listen to what she's worried about with the money and what kinds of things she thinks the family needs. Then share what you are worried about.
As you both understand each other, offer solutions and ask her how she feels about each of them. Listening is the best way to work together.
If your partner can't sleep, she is probably stressed about something. Ask how she is feeling, and then really listen to her answer. Knowing you're listening can help put her at ease because it reminds her she doesn't have to face her problems alone.
Listening can be hard, especially when you feel like you know what the solution is. Many women express their frustration that their man only wants to "fix" their problems rather than listen to why they are having the problems or how they feel about it.
Letting your wife express how she is feeling and why will show her that you love her and care about her. When you listen you confirm to her that her feelings are valid and that you want her to be happy.
Christa is a part time photographer, part time writer and full time lover of life. She loves eating chocolate chip cookies and singing (but not at the same time). She has her degree in political science.