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Tools Men Don’t Have for Relationships – part 2

CoupleThis article is the second part of Don’t Leave the Relationship – Leave the Model. The first article is at this post.

Men aren’t bad, broken, or doomed. We just never had the role models we needed to learn how be vulnerable and powerful emotionally. Taught by our mothers, teachers, girlfriends, and then wives how to be sensitive like a woman, we continually fail. Either we just give up at the start, or we try to be that sensitive, nice guy. That doesn’t work, though, and we end up with women giving us more instruction.

Both women and men bought into the idea that men experience and share their emotions in similar ways. While it’s true, we are more similar than not, men need a unique skill set to succeed with relationship issues. For example, when we can be vulnerable and assertive simultaneously, everyone is happy.

Men often join a men’s group because they are failing or failed at another relationship. Most men want to succeed. They are serious about the suggestions they get from their emotional experts: women. Yet it always seems like they end up flunking out of the course.

Both sexes need to realize that, as men, we want to connect to and love our partners. What we learned works for a while, but invariably, trying to express like the women we love chokes us. We work at sitting and listening while feeling this urge to jump up and say what we feel. For many of us, it evolves to be sitting through conversations that have us feeling as if we just got the flu.

No one is to blame for this. Men are running the wrong program. Being raised by women, we naturally assume we need to feel and express like women. Put a man in a good men’s group, and he immediately sees men being emotionally real—in a masculine manner. He slowly tries out these new skills only to find them easy and fun. To his amazement, he goes home being authentic like he’s learning to be in his group, and his partner melts.

The collective of his group teaches each man what none had growing up. The men of the group model MEI – Masculine Emotional Intelligence. A man begins to practice being his own man emotionally in his group with the feedback only men can give. This is NOT therapy; it’s men being real as men.

In its ten years, the Sandpoint Men’s Group has evolved into a set of free men’s groups meeting every Wednesday night. Interested men are welcome to contact us –

Owen Marcus, MA, Rolfer, men’s trainer (www.freetowin.CO) and founder of the Sandpoint Men’s Group – call if you have questions: 265.8440.

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