It can be difficult to figure out how to comfort a man because men express emotions differently than women. In addition, he may not want you to know that he is upset, much less wanting to ask for help. Following these recommendations, you will understand that it is really possible to comfort a man - just get along with him on the same wavelength.
Method 1 of 3: Recognize a stressed man
Step 1. Know how men usually respond to stress
Most often, their reaction is different from that of women. As a rule, women are looking for a group of friends to speak out. A man, in turn, can isolate himself or hide from the attention of others. For example, he may start watching TV more often than usual, drink alcohol, or go to the gym for hours to relieve stress. However, no matter how he reacts to stress, remember that all men are different. There are several possible reactions:
- Avoid the situation. He may try to avoid places or people that provoke stress.
- Create problems to mask stress. While counterproductive, a man can create problems in order to avoid real difficulties or to feel more in control.
- Get angry. Generally, it is easier for men to express anger than other emotions, as it is more socially acceptable. Perhaps, at the snap of his fingers, he loses his temper or begins to scream.
- Blame others. Since men tend to see the cause in external circumstances, your partner may blame others for their problems in order to avoid stress.
- Increase physical activity. The man may start exercising more, playing sports, or doing other physical exercises to relieve tension.
Step 2. Don't take it personally
If the man you are in a relationship with has withdrawn a little, there may be something bothering him (not related to you). Remember not to jump to conclusions like "He doesn't like me anymore," "I did something wrong," or, even worse, "He's leaving me!" Many men are used to keeping everything to themselves and not talking about problems. Overreacting to his solitude can cause him to distance himself further.
Don't beat him up for this stress response, or he may become even more defensive
Step 3. Don't bore him with help
Of course, you want to comfort your partner and show him that you care about him, but be careful. Trying to help you start offering solutions or doing something for him can make him feel weak. If you ask him over and over again, “What happened? Something is wrong? Why won't you let me help you? " - this will have negative consequences, and, probably, the man will become angry with you. The best approach is to simply offer support and understanding, without trying to solve his problem.
Method 2 of 3: Show him you care
Step 1. Offer support
Everything is ambiguous here: some men want to feel support from a loved one, while others just want to get personal space. In general, a man needs to know that you are on his side, and also that he can count on your support. Offer to listen to him if he wants to talk. If you feel that something is bothering him, bring it up without putting pressure on him.
- For example: “I've noticed that you have been looking a little worried lately. Has anything happened at work? " Many men will not be the first to openly talk about their problem, but some will do so if asked.
- If he asks for personal space, don't take it personally. As soon as he puts his thoughts in order, he may be more willing to turn to you, knowing that you are ready to support him.
Step 2. Listen carefully to him
A man can either share what is on his mind or remain silent. Unfortunately, some men tend to associate talking about feelings with weakness. If he decides to talk, listen carefully without interrupting. Try not to offer solutions or give advice unless he asks. Don't make trivial comments like, "You can handle this," or, "Don't worry about it." Such statements are not constructive and only hurt because they belittle a person's feelings.
- If he doesn't want to talk, sit with him in silence. A couple of subtle questions won't hurt, but don't harass him with them.
- Don't mention his problems or irritants. If he wants to discuss it, he will raise the issue himself.
Step 3. Let him express himself in his own way
As mentioned earlier, some men respond to stress by feeling the need to be strong or active. These reactions are fine as long as he doesn't ignore the real problem. Allow him to respond with anger or act in a more conscious and analytical way, or, if he is grieving, cry. Don't underestimate his feelings, but bring him back to reality and give hope. All of these typical male reactions will help him cope. There is no “right” way to express your feelings.
Don't set a time frame for his feelings or expect him to express them in any particular way. Let him take the lead
Step 4. Make it clear to him that it's okay to be sad
Unfortunately, due to social norms, many men believe that feeling sad or fearful is a sign of weakness. Dissuade him by saying that all feelings are an integral part of human nature. There are no “good” or “bad” feelings. Remind him that you don't think bad of him, even if he is not sad.
Method 3 of 3: Cheer him up
Step 1. Feed his ego and point out his strengths
Let him know that you admire him and appreciate all the good things about him. Show him that you still value him a lot, even if he is going through tough times. Showing an unconditionally positive attitude will reassure him that he can count on you even when he is not feeling his best.
Step 2. Prepare his favorite meals
Take the stress away from him, at least for a short time, while he nibbles on his favorite lasagna. Eat foods rich in protein and carbohydrates as they increase serotonin levels and have a calming effect on the body.
Step 3. Give him a stress relief gift basket
Add some of his favorite chips, nuts and crackers to it. You can also put chocolate in there, as it tends to make most people smile. As an added bonus, add a bottle of massage oil with a gift voucher for a free massage.
Step 4. Offer to give him a massage
He will be very grateful if you give him a relaxing massage to relieve his tension. It is scientifically proven that massage relaxes the mind by improving blood circulation. Physical touch can not only show concern, but also improve a man's bad mood.
Step 5. Offer him to go somewhere
Many men like to deal with stress by staying active. Without ignoring his problems, offer to go for a walk, attend a match, or engage in other social activities. If he refuses, gently insist on your own. Taking him away from his problems a little can be good for him.
This is especially important if he is isolated from society
Step 6. Keep in touch
If he is in crisis and wants personal space, it would be helpful to keep in touch with him. For example, suggest calling once a week. Knowing that you will call can bring him comfort and lift his spirits. However, once you decide to get in touch, keep your word and go all the way.
Remember, you are not responsible for "fixing" a man. You can offer him support, but, in the end, it depends only on him whether he will get better
- If he is threatening suicide or trying to commit suicide, or is abusing alcohol or drugs, suggest that he immediately seek psychotherapeutic help.
- Consider seeking professional help if his discouragement persists for no apparent reason.