I remembered when a woman named Jennifer recalled how crushed she felt when a neighbor made an unkind comment about a recipe she had shared with her a week earlier. For several days, Jennifer was quiet and could not say anything nice about her neighbor. Jennifer’s husband, Brad, could not understand the problem. “It’s only a recipe; get over it,” he would say. Of course, Brad’s comments only stabbed Jennifer in the heart even more.
“Not only does my neighbor say nasty things, my husband doesn’t care about what I say either,” Jennifer said with tears in her eyes. She has always regretted telling Brad her feelings, knowing it would end up back in her face or become part of some joke later on.
The unemotional person (often the man) may make the comment to Jennifer, “It’s only a recipe; get over it” or “What is all the big fuss all about — you’re being sooo emotional!” The unemotional man has little space in his life for all the “whining” that does not make sense to him. Whether unemotional or not, men are wired to first understand how and why something happens before emotion becomes a part of the response. An unemotional man’s brain organizes, evaluates, and has more of a relationship with objects than humans. Unemotional men feel more in control with objects and especially enjoy that objects don’t talk back! Men must sort out the pieces by logically taking the situation apart, working it out, and putting it back together before he can understand the situation in his own way. The man uses a “fix-it” approach to just about everything as a way to move on with life. This is mostly due to the man’s logical mind needing to rationally understand how he fits in with situations and his natural ability to compartmentalize life. Once the man understands the issues, then and only then, can he move on to the emotional side of the issue.
For the unemotional person, emotions only get in the way of thinking rationally and making decisions. Having emotions creates a sense of being out of control for the logical person. Emotions represent vulnerability, weakness, and sometimes the fear that something bad may happen. The woman needs to help the man work through the situation by letting him dissect it, logically understand it, and fix it in his own mind. Then he will be better able to move closer to the emotional part.