Are men relationally challenged?
Men as a group are not as good at relationships as women as a group. At birth, the female brain is better wired for relationships than the male brain, and because of this, women are better at empathy and reading others. Add to this the difference in how we are taught and raised, and the difference in how we do at relationships is understandable. It’s not that I am saying men are stupid – just that we are less programmed for relationships, and get less instruction on relationships. Like many things, those who don’t fully “get it” also tend to not be aware that they don’t get it.
Imagine if all men were completely colour-blind, while all women could see colours. Men would have no problems communicating about what they see with other colour-blind men, but would be frustrated by women who claim to see things that they cannot see. The women would get on just fine with other colour-seeing women, and would be frustrated with men who say they can’t see what is so clearly there in front of their eyes.
While that might help you see the issue, colour-blindness is a poor metaphor because men can learn to be much better at relationships. We can learn to be more empathetic, and to notice subtle clues about how others are feeling. Given the handicap we start with, we will never outclass some women, but we can get much better, and that can make our marriages better.
Am I saying the guys should change to be like the woman? Why not ask them to be more like we are? The reality here is that the women are seeing something that is there. This is not about right and wrong, but about seeing and not seeing. It would make no sense to say the people who can see colours should pretend they don’t exist – especially if there is a way for those who don’t see colours to learn to see them.