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Show ALL Forums  > Ask A Guy  > How to best support a man during difficult times?      Home login  
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 happy woodstock
Joined: 12/12/2009
Msg: 1
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How to best support a man during difficult times?Page 1 of 1    
I wanted to toss a general question out there that I could not find in the thread search. Maybe I did not use the key terms that would have pulled up the topic. If that is the case, I am sure someone will let me know. LOL

As a woman, I know that someone listening to me talk about the problem and possibly (but not always) offering a suggestion would be comforting.

From a male point of view, what is the best way to emotionally support a man during difficult times?

Thanks
 CommonSensible
Joined: 1/10/2010
Msg: 2
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:15:13 AM
Sometimes.. and for a lot of men.. MOST times.. we just dont want to be expected to talk about our FEELINGS, the way that women do.

"Is there anything I can do to help?" would be about it.

Then he'll say yes.. or not.

He might also want some "cave time" to figure it out on his own. Leave him alone when he caves.

Oh.. then try to handle all of YOUR issues by yourself.. Now is not the time to put MORE stress on him.
 StuVaBch
Joined: 11/23/2009
Msg: 3
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:21:49 AM

what is the best way to emotionally support a man during difficult times?

If you really want to help? I mean really help?

Show up naked with a bucket of wings. It will certainly take his mind off things and sex is a great stress release.
 TheNewDeal
Joined: 12/13/2009
Msg: 4
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:29:01 AM
Stop asking him questions every day! Chill on that.
Take care of your own small problems until HE offers to help again.
 broncsbuff
Joined: 4/18/2008
Msg: 5
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:31:34 AM
You take care of the mens three basic needs...

1. sex
2. food
3. sleep

Feed him, screw him, then let him go to his man cave and take a nap

It really depends on the problem.
 I Cornelius
Joined: 1/4/2009
Msg: 6
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:50:19 AM
Depends on the man.

If he's the type of guy who DOES usually communicate and share his thoughts/feelings and whatnot, then he'd certainly appreciate having the extra p.o.v. If he's a tight lipped grumpy-puss most of the time, he'd clam up about it anyway.

I can tell you, as far as what I would want though... keep in mind, however, I'm not normal. When I'm down, I want support. I DO want to know someone else is concerned about me and is willing to help me sort it out. It shows they care about my well being and... if we are a couple... OUR well being as well. Talking it thru, offering suggestions... whatever. It's all good and all okay by me.

It would have to be "sushi and sex" though. "Wings and sex" would be too heavy in the stomach.
 Komay1
Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 7
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 7:55:15 AM
Well, right now I am going through easily the worst time of my life (so far!). And what would I like right now?

Questions? No.
Suggestions? Not unless they are really educated, which they probably wont be because of my next point...

I don't know if I speak for all men in this, but I won't talk about what's bothering me simply because I am conditioned to believe that "Nobody wants to hear me ****. Man up, and fix it yourself."

So how best to support a troubled man? Keep him company, and if he decides to talk about the problem, listen.
 Thesumofallparts
Joined: 4/5/2009
Msg: 8
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 8:02:58 AM
Just please don't nag!!!

Can't emphasize enough how annoying it is to be asked:
"Is everything ok?"
"What can I do to make you happy?"
"Why are you not talking?"
And similar...
Ask once, take the answer for what it is, and then DON'T ASK AGAIN!!!!

Of course, a little trip to Vicky's Secret followed by a private "fashion show" which leads to wild monkey sex won't hurt...

As Chris Rock said in a stand up act, stating what men want from you:
"Feed me, fvck me, shut the fvck up!"
 GeneralizingNow
Joined: 10/10/2007
Msg: 9
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 8:51:49 AM
OK, I call BS on the sex part.
I've been with two men who lost their jobs while we were dating.
ONE was all about the sex, and I happily and enthusiastically supported him on this issue. Then he dumped me.
The OTHER, though, wanted nothing to do with me. Didn't want to talk, didn't want to hear from me. I asked him if there was anything I could do to help, and he said no. Guess what? He "no'ed" himself right out of a relationship--I dumped HIM. I say Too Fking Bad if you're having a bad time, you cannot ignore the other person in your life and expect her to just hang in there.
 arecpea
Joined: 4/29/2009
Msg: 10
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 8:56:31 AM
Don't ask me all kinds of questions about the situation, I'll talk about it when i'm ready. You remind me of my mom when that happens.


JA JA JA

And ofcourse, sex, and food. BOOM I HAVE SPOKEN
 Thesumofallparts
Joined: 4/5/2009
Msg: 11
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 9:25:08 AM

The OTHER, though, wanted nothing to do with me. Didn't want to talk, didn't want to hear from me. I asked him if there was anything I could do to help, and he said no. Guess what? He "no'ed" himself right out of a relationship--I dumped HIM. I say Too Fking Bad if you're having a bad time, you cannot ignore the other person in your life and expect her to just hang in there.


This is inexcusable behavior, but he probably didn't want to be with you anymore, anyway, so he pushed you away.

It's not a fine line, ladies. As long as he still wants to be with you (this guy mentioned above, did not) and isn't acting like a jerk because of his problems (this is childish behavoir, to take out your frustration and anger on others), just let him be! You all don't want any advice after one of your vent/whine sessions to us, so it's really the same thing: DON'T be the fixer!
 impohell
Joined: 1/7/2010
Msg: 12
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 9:36:15 AM
Since we're assuming a general gender difference here, the one that comes to mind is that when a man is trying to figure a problem he will be focused on the solution and not the emotions, but meanwhile having the emotions in the background. The solution will make sense rationally and then feel right emotionally. I know that sounds backwards but that's the difference. While he struggles with the reasoning he just needs to know two things. One is that you'll stick with him and be on his side whatever he decides to do. Two is that his struggle shows off his desire for happiness and that desire is one you share, so in that you are both served by the effort. The emotional support comes not from being a sympathetic ear as he makes emotionally grasping attempts at feeling right about things, it comes from gestures of loyalty and comfort directly to him and not about whatever he may be saying or not saying. Gestures showing affection and concern will calm any emotional doubt and will maintain the intimacy he relies on. Your job is to respond to how he feels but not talk about how he feels. Talking is for solving problems, and emotional well being comes from the solution. Men aren't supposed to be happy no matter what. We reserve happiness for doing the job well. So, while he is unhappy as he goes about his struggle, make that less tedious by punctuating it with simple reminders of your loyalty, balancing the necessary pains he must endure with some pleasures you have to offer. Think of it like bringing someone a nice cold glass of lemonade as they take a break from working a hot and demanding job, or a cup of hot chocolate as they rest and warm up from a cold and tiring one.
 pitufina_77
Joined: 8/13/2009
Msg: 13
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 10:26:02 AM


Can't emphasize enough how annoying it is to be asked:
"Is everything ok?"
"What can I do to make you happy?"
"Why are you not talking?"
And similar...
Ask once, take the answer for what it is, and then DON'T ASK AGAIN!!!!


So, to a man who is bereaved, who also didn't like it the first time when you said "I'm sorry for your loss", to whom could be annoying to ask "how are you doing?" and whom, to make matters worse, is at a far reasonable distance (plane travel), what could you say to such a person?

In order to show that I think of him, I support him, I haven't forgotten and that he matters.

I've already said that, if he wants to talk or if he needs help, I'm available to him.

Just to touch base?
 happy woodstock
Joined: 12/12/2009
Msg: 14
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 10:29:29 AM
Thanks for everyone's input. I will put it to good use.
 typhoon100
Joined: 4/8/2009
Msg: 15
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 10:33:44 AM
Good topic!

Ok, three things, make that four.

1) Go about your tasks as if his stress doesn't effect you in anyway. Don't show any signs of being troubled by his dilemma. Sort of like a duck in the water when you get to close to it,... it looks at you and swims the other way calm as can be, but it's feet are churning beneath the calm.

2) Compliment him on his past successes and at the same time tell him that "he" and only he will rise again just as he did in the past. Things always work out.

3) Talk to him about positive things that are happening in "your" life.

4) Lastly, ask him to do you a big favor, something that supposedly would make you really happy, something really miniscuel / (grrr spelling)/ minor. Something that would only take him no more than an hour to do. Something that you can't do for yourself.

5) Finally, if/when he will talk about the problem, then help him prioritize the issues at hand, and have him take care of resolving issues till noon everyday, and in the remainder of the day, go forward with positive things.

6) Moreover, encourage him to go out in the evenings to do leisure things that he really enjoys, ie) a recreational sport, poker with the boys, going for a beer with a buddy of his.

7) Absolutely lastly and not in any order of importance.... Ask him for a date on a future evening, (within a week) as funds allow. A night or two at a resort or it could be a dinner you prepare, kids gone, candles and a movie, maybe BJ to end the evening if he likes poker, other wise, Holdim. lol.
 hyoid
Joined: 5/12/2009
Msg: 16
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 10:35:47 AM
Brownies, backrubs and BJs are all very nice. But they don't address the issue.

Tell him " Man up! Pick a solution and get started. I'll help however I can but don't make me guess how to help. Whatever you do, don't effin' ignore me! I know you may not have the time, resources or energy to keep our relationship going the way it was but I'm not a car with a cracked block, that you can store up on jacks for a couple of years until you get around to fixing it. "

Sounds ****y and demanding, doesn't it?

But standup guys (women too) know that every interaction comes with a cost and a benefit. Many (most?) difficulties result from investments of one sort or another gone bad. Note: this is not exclusively about monetary transactions.

By giving this ultimatum, you are giving a guarantee. Your support in exchange for inclusion. When every thing else is falling apart, a sure thing is attractive as hell.
 Thesumofallparts
Joined: 4/5/2009
Msg: 17
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 10:58:34 AM

In order to show that I think of him, I support him, I haven't forgotten and that he matters.


Yes! Finally, one of you gets it! Just like she says, offer your help and support, make sure he knows you're there for him, and then let it be, he'll be fine and will come to you if he wants to. That really isn't a gender thing, it's universal. Offer your help and support to someone, and let them decide if they want to take it.
 justwant2no
Joined: 11/14/2007
Msg: 18
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 11:02:16 AM

Keep him company, and if he decides to talk about the problem, listen

Sounds about right. Depends on the problem, severity and length - if after several days, he is moping around, well, that requires something along hyoid's point - a reality check of sorts. And it never hurts to quote the old addages - 'Don't sweat the small stuff, and in the greater scheme of things, it's ALL small stuff.' unless it is a serious health issue, at which point all you can really do is hold him, be there and let him know you'll tough it out together.
 StuVaBch
Joined: 11/23/2009
Msg: 19
How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 11:13:47 AM

offer your help and support

Men (well normal men) do not want to be supported (in any fashion) by women. Offering help and support is the wrong thing to do and will be met with negatively.

Most of the guys here are absolutely correct. Just "be there" for him. Don't try and help but maybe offer a pleasant distraction.
 happy-go-lucky_
Joined: 7/21/2009
Msg: 20
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 11:53:31 AM
I can't speak for ALL men, but most men I know, myself included, tend to be fiercely independent, and we almost always prefer to handle our issues and problems ourselves, unless we're just about at the end of our tether and ready to give up completely (which ought to be a rarity unless the guy is a complete f***-up).

So I echo all the posts above that recommend you offer to lend a sympathetic ear if he wants to talk, and a helping hand if he's in need of help, and then just step back. Men are grown-ups, just like women, so they rarely need help unless they specifically ask for it.

That being said, depending on the circumstance, expressions of support and little gestures such as notes or cards are always welcome--I'm just speaking for myself here. I certainly never expect my SO to fix my personal issues or problems for me, however.
 ICMUD
Joined: 11/2/2009
Msg: 21
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How to best support a man during difficult times?
Posted: 1/20/2010 12:39:12 PM
what was the problem?
how can u get advice on a problem that dont exist let alone fix it?

ok say his car has crapped it, will your talking fix it? nooooooo.
his burnt his toast and has to go to work hungry, how u gonna fix that?
his crapped his undies, you gonna wipe it?
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