Tuesday, September 25, 2007

get in his head

Lately, I've been reading some really interesting blogs by men and felt a little envious (ok, maybe jealous) of their wives. I mean, here are some men that actually write what's going on in their minds. Even if their blogs are a secret to their wives, these men are actively processing what's going on in their heads.

I've often wished I could get into my husband's head for just 15 minutes. What is he thinking? How does his mind work? What is he really feeling. Sure, I know, it might not be a pretty picture. It could even be a little scary. But there's so much that's unsaid. There's so much silence. There's so much I want to know that I don't want to have to ask to hear.

The other day I even mentioned to him that I thought it would be great if he wrote a blog. He said that wasn't going to happen. But it's a shame, because, really, he communicates very well in writing. He's just not a talker. He's a thinker. Which brings me back to my point: I wish I could get into his head.


XI Summit said...

Pardon me for being a bit blunt, but you're a step ahead of average for genuinely wanting to know what's really going on in there, even though it can be dark and a bit squishy.

In my (ever increasing) years on this Earth I've had many ask for my advice on getting their spouse to get talking or to at least talk about more than getting new tires or the results of yesterday's shopping trip. In so many of those cases the asker was not interested in being a listener but more of what I call a corrector. Or judger. Or controller. Or whatever. Someone who really had little interest in HEARING what their SO really thought but rather wanted their SO to think their way, talk about what they wanted to hear instead of what the SO was really thinking. Does that make sense?

In the world of men it's all too often about being right which, by definition, often means proving someone else wrong. Or being proven wrong. Opening up verbally can become a daunting thing when you know there will likely be a challenge to counter. That's what makes writing so personally powerful, perhaps even liberating particularly for those of us who are reluctant debaters. You can pour your thoughts out uninterrupted and unchallenged (at least until you publish) and that, above all, is most alluring. I find that when I speak the listener is too often not entirely listening to what I am saying but rather listening for openings to challenge my thoughts or to ask questions (that I will be answering in just a moment, patience please) or to change the subject which means that what I have to say might never be said or will be misunderstood. But when I write I can complete a thought, I can answer the questions before they are asked, and I can stay on-subject until I am satisfied. Oh, and I can edit it to fix it up when I realize what a doofus I am!

Such is the power ....

I apologize for not having an answer or good suggestions. Perhaps just discussing blog posts that match areas he has interests in could catch his interest, if not to talk at least to write. Or maybe not.

Phyllis Renée said...

XI -- Ok, can I just say . . . ouch! I must confess to being one of those not really listening, judging, and controlling people. I'll definitely have to keep working on not being like that.

And it's not so much that I really want him to start his own blog, but I would like to know what's really going on up there. You know? But I have been with this complex man for 22 years and he is who he is and I love him, regardless of what he's thinking.

Recovering Soul said...

We had a discussion awhile back on my blog about spouses who also blog or them finding our blogs.

I consider it a blessing that Therese and I are both out here, and it gives us a place to really talk some things out. Other people wish their spouses DIDN'T know about it. And still others don't care.

Be careful what you wish for! Some of the things I say on here my wife can't believe... :)

Phyllis Renée said...

RS -- I don't think my husband would be surprised at anything I said on here. I'm the verbal one and we've been together long enough he knows just how crazy . . . er . . . unique I am. And yes, you and Therese are just the sort of people I was envying.

XI Summit said...

Yikes, I'm sorry that 'came out' much harsher than I intended. Unfortunately Queenie exhibits some of those characteristics which is why she knows less about me than she'd probably like.

Recognizing is the most important step, keep at it and you'll continue learning more about him.

for a different kind of girl said...

Through no real cover up on my part and a matter of just going into the computer history, my husband "discovered" my blog shortly after I started it. To be balanced, I never told him I was writing one. I didn't plan to bust our dirty laundry for the world, so to speak, so I guess I told myself it was fine that way.

Now I know he looks at it regularly. Sometimes he looks at the comments, too. However, neither of us have ever had a discussion about it in the year or so it's been around.

My husband is not a communicator. It is truly the greatest frustration I have in our relationship. I suppose I'd almost wish he'd blog, too, just so I could get a better bead on him sometimes.

But then I'm afraid, too, of what he'd post about (honestly, he'd probably ramble as much as I do on mine about nothing more often than not), because he avoids discussions. Last night, in hopes of addressing the 'I typically bring this up' topic of whether we'll have more children, he asked me about my new work shoes in response.

So, to sum up, I get what you're saying...

Anonymous said...

Have you ever played Minesweeper? (there is a point to the question). In that game, on expert mode, you can only find all the mines by sometimes figuring where the mines are not. You flag the mines you know are there, but when you find spots that you know a mine cannot be in, that is a spot you safely click, and the game continues until you find all the mines.
Now for the point I wanted to make. Men communicate all the time. Sometimes we are direct with words, and other times it is about what is not there. Our postures, our gestures, our movements are all ways that we communicate and learn to understand each other.
Things inside men's heads are just as complex (on a general scale) as the thoughts that women think about each day.
Mostly, I agree with XI's first comment, and I know it came out pretty strongly, but there was a lot of truth.

Phyllis Renée said...

FADKOG -- RL has always known about my blog, so I know sometimes he reads it, but we don't really talk about it much. I can't imagine being in your position though. I wouldn't have been able to keep quiet about it. Him changing the subject when asked a specific question: now that I can relate to.

Silent Male -- I've never been good at Minesweep. I always would get so frustrated with it I guess I really took the time figure it out. But I do see you point. And really that makes sense, especially with RL, because a lot of his emotions and such are reflected by what he does rather than what he says.

In XI defense, though, I really didn't take what he said as being harsh. It was very true, and so true for me it really it home. You know what they say: truth hurts. The things he mentioned are exactly things I tend to do, but I know I need to work on them. It was a helpful reminder.

Thank you all for your comments. It's been very helpful.

Confused Husband said...

"Men communicate all the time. Sometimes we are direct with words, and other times it is about what is not there. Our postures, our gestures, our movements are all ways that we communicate"

I agree 110% with what Silent Male wrote here. There are so many times that I *try* to let my gestures and movements speak for me. Unfortunately it rarely works. In my own little mind I feel that if a person truly loves you and is in tune to you he/she wouldn't need you to say certain things. They should be able to know it just by how you present yourself. Like I said though, that's just my little world.

I want to know the same thing as you though. In two different ways though. First I'd like to know what is going on in my own head. Second I'd really love to know what is going on in Summer's head. Some of that admitedly may be due to what xi had to say. But I truly do want to know what she is thinking. I know when she is feeling stressed or upset but i want to know more than that. Get deeper in there.

If only this were Star Trek and we could be Betazoids. (I think that's what Troi was, correct me if I'm wrong RS)

Phyllis Renée said...

Wasn't Troi only able to sense feelings? I don't think she could read minds. Of course, that would be great, because no matter the amount of non-verebal communication there comes a point when we need to open our mouths. I mean, I may be able to sense what he's feeling, but it doesn't matter how much I love my husband, I can't read his mind. Ane, dang it, he hates it that I can't! :o)

Recovering Soul said...

I've never loved CH more than when he made his Star Trek comment.

XI Summit said...

To read someone's mind, wouldn't that be a great, valuable skill? NOT! While Queenie (based on how many times she attempts to complete sentences for me) is completely convinced she can 'read' me even though there have ben few times when she's read me right. That's my fault, growing up in a judgemental environment I learned how to confuse everyone by exibiting manners and expressions that belie my thoughts and have not been able to bust the habit.

OK, enough of he inconsequential, time for a bit of Trek intervention. Betazoids can, to an extent, read others thoughts depending on the species they have encountered. However, culturally they are taught that reading someone's mind is considered a violation of that person and so are trained to not do so.

For further research on the subject please dust off Star Trek Nemesis and have a look-see, Troi sets the stage for Pickard to save the day. And that's all I'll say.