Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.
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January 20, 2010
Last week, I talked about the mystery of men being “Emotionally Unavailable.” One friend shed light on what it felt like when her boyfriend lacked in this area, causing her to break up with him. After further discussion and much research, I discovered that we may not really want men to have all the emotions that we as women do, but we DO want to feel their “presence” with us. We want to feel them connecting with us in that moment we are with them. The men I spoke to admitted that they are most able to be present and feel their woman when they are get to transition from their previous task or “hunt” from that day. So the question I proposed last week is, “How do we allow men to transition?”
The men I interviewed all differed a little in the ways that they transitioned from task to task, but they all seem to have some kind of transition ritual. One man who works as an EMT, giving emergency medical treatment to trauma patients, mentioned that his transition ritual involves playing video games for thirty minutes. He said, he gets to take all of his frustrations out on the bad guys in the games, and he can transition away from his stressful job to being present with his wife and two kids. After thirty minutes of game-playing, his wife mentioned that he comes over to her, and the first thing he does is ask about her day, and focuses on what she needs in that moment. She recalls this being a far cry from the short,flat response she use to get from him when she rushed him at the front door– first thing with hugs, and details of her day with the kids.
I also remember my previous boss who use to get a cup of coffee on his way to his desk every morning. It seemed almost a religious practice for him. On the days when he didn’t get to enjoy his cup of coffee before my colleagues and I all started bombarding him with the issues of the day, he seemed scattered, a bit frustrated, and didn’t appear to want to hear anything we had to say. I see now that, he was probably reacting to not getting his coffee “transition ritual” to go from being at home with his family to his new “hunt of the day” at work.
I notice my boyfriend has his own transition ritual when he gets home from his last “hunt” too. He empties his pockets, takes off his shoes, and checks his email for about 15-20 minutes. His transition appears complete, because then he looks up at me, and asks about what I want to do or talk about next. The focus is on me and I must say, feeling his amazing presence and connection with me is sooo worth it!
The next time you don’t feel like your man is connecting with you, perhaps you’ll consider that maybe he didn’t get his transition time. Think about what his last hunt might have been? Was he solving a problem at work, dealing with an intense situation, or analyzing a complex matter? Chances are he hasn’t transitioned to being with you in that moment. Understand that he would much rather be connecting with your feminine yumminess, but he might not be complete with his current “hunt” that is taking all of his attention. He may also not even be aware that you are feeling deprived of his connection. Remember…he can’t read your mind. Although, I know sometimes we think they should be able to, right?
To help him transition, you might asd, “Would you like some time to unwind before dinner?” Or “You seem distracted, is there something you needed to finish before we go out tonight?” You might even ask your man what he likes to do when he gets home from work to transition to being at home? Honor whatever it might be, even if he tells you he likes watching T.V. for a while. Remember, it’s a ritual, and be ready to receive the amazing after-effects of him getting that time he needs.
Men experience feeling through the physical, which is why they like playing contact sports, and why they like being touched. I’ve never talked to a guy who didn’t light up at the thought of a massage. You may find your man more “present” with the help of your gentle hands. A nice neck rub, or back scratch can often help a man be more present to “feeling.” Feeling then leads to connecting and being more available to you! Enjoy it Ladies!
Please do write back with any aha! moments you have when you find your man is getting his transition time. Was he more present and available to you? Tell me everything!