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Women have a tendency to gather emotional networks and support groups around them as part of the course. The nesting instinct a strong force in their lives. It is natural and instinctual to most. Men have a tendency to keep emotions, feelings and thoughts contained and mostly unexpressed. The need to share through groups and networks less defined and needed. The potential problems in communication within a relationship are that when we are true to our gender 'she wants to know and understand', and more often than not 'he wants to just keep doing' and not be overly pre occupied with feelings or the lack of them.
Often it takes a literal crisis for many men to recognize that there is something wrong with a situation. At these times if asked how are you the answer will more than likely be "I am fine', even though beneath the surface there is a crisis brewing. There are of course exceptions to the rule though the analogy is strong nevertheless. When a mans relationship starts to break down the core of it is usually related to this predominant and possibly cultural lack of communication.
The affects of this being stress, anxiety and a general lethargy with his self-expression. Feelings of loneliness, confusion and guilt can sneak up on a man if his nest starts to collapse and before he knows it he may find that he is in the midst of an emotional crisis, using his innate ability to contain himself further as first stage response, not knowing that pressure is building up inside. This pressure if not recognised and understood can become anger even rage. Rage can become internalized and lead to a deep depression and or even suicide and it can also be externalized into abusive behaviors and violence and or self-destructive habits such as alcohol and substance overuse. All this can by nature sneak up on a man without him knowing it.
The affects of a mans self-containment when in the midst of an evolved relationship crisis can be extremely damaging in the short term and devastating in the long run. The marriage or relationship breaks down and/or goes into separation because of a poor habit of communication. The woman feeling she is not being heard or understood and the man thinking that there is something wrong with her blaming hormones or other events. Blame and feelings of separation becoming the topic of communication further isolating each partner.
When a relationship is suffering the first sign of damage is often the level of intimacy in that relationship. Intimacy expresses itself through touch and sensitivity. Men often confuse intimacy with sex and fail to see that it is in the actions of tenderness and loving kindness that a women best relates to his masculine nature. Therefore the problem with intimacy for a man is as usual often actually knowing what it is in the first place. It is very painful to accept that something is wrong with your relationship especially if you have invested many years of your effort and presence. Once you get intimacy right communication naturally follows and so does sex.
It takes courage to express deep emotions and feelings and it takes effort and commitment to allow feelings to become a culture of a mans self-expression. Nevertheless the ability to make relationships work lies in becoming more adept at this, so that when a challenge of communication and need presents itself, that which may now feel like an act of courage must become by nature natural instinct. The ability to see strength in vulnerability and sensitivity as well as in action and ability will take a man to depths of understanding that he may have never known before.