He may never admit he worries about anything, but trust us, he does.
Weakness and men don’t mix. With protector/provider ingrained in their DNA, men believe it’s their primal job to be strong. If outside influences upset a man’s strength or ability to provide and protect, the man may experience angst, stress and a desperate desire to regain control.
However, since men are unlikely to share their feelings, the silent anxiety affects their relationships in untold ways.
The man wants to solve, push through, or dispel his fears, but he doesn’t want to admit them to others. Meanwhile, his significant other can sense his worry, but may not be able to put her proverbial finger on the issue, which results in a disconnection and lack of understanding. She might think he is being distant, cheating, uninterested or worse.
As problem-solvers, men look for the fastest, most effective ways to work through issues, and many think the best way is to do that alone.
But, therein lies the main challenge for relationship dynamics: He wants to work through it alone and thus fails to communicate it, and his significant other knows something’s wrong, but doesn’t know what it is, and may assume it has something to do with her, even if it doesn’t.
So, what do men fear? Here are the top seven things men worry about:
1. Do I make enough money?
Money is a huge issue, but it isn’t only about cash. It’s what the cash represents:
Self-value: what he believes he’s worth
Perceived value: by the world, by a superior, by his family, by his family of origin
Security: for himself, for his family
Flexibility: lifestyle, providing for his family
Achievement: self and in the eyes of others
Future considerations: college for kids, retirement, weddings, vacations
Yes, women also work and contribute to these items… but most men will see this as their job.
How you can help: Stay active in the finances. Pay the bills — all the bills — together, regardless of who makes what paycheck. A joint effort means that success/challenges are addressed by both of you, and the stress is then shared. And let him know you’re proud of him. It sounds like such a small thing, but your pride in him will mean a lot.
2. Have I accomplished/done enough in life?
Men look back often and wonder:
What have I accomplished in my life?
What is my legacy?
Will I be remembered in some way?
Is this what I want?
Am I happy?
Is the grass greener somewhere else?
This self-evaluation leads to wondering if they are living life to their fullest.
How you can help: Talk to him about it… without judgment. What are his short and long-term aspirations? What does he want for himself, and what does he need from you to make it happen?