Love is one area of a man’s life in which he’s weak more than he’s strong. Many of our actions in relationships are born out of the need to impress or satisfy a woman. Some men are even swallowed whole. But the fact is men are merely human. They have feelings, and those feelings can be broken. Men hurt too. Men are built to be strong…to be the pillar of strength. Men are human. Hercules, Zeus, Goliath, or Thor are powerful men. They are fake. Many of us men try to be strong like them, some might event succeed, but it is not universal. Many men are taught that you don’t show emotions of sadness or hurt…let alone let people see you cry. Me personally, I refuse to show certain emotions in front of people. If I get to the point where I start to cry? Oh my, I’ll get mad as hell at myself LOL. Men may deal with hurt and pain differently than women. I feel that is a fact. However, there is diversity among men with regards to how they deal with hurt and pain. One thing that I’m able to handle, keep my head high, dust it off, and keep it moving; could be the same thing that breaks the next man.
In relationships most of all, men have unrealistic expectations set in place for them; expectations that can take a damaging toll. When a man gets hurt it’s actually worse than when a woman does. Women are typically more emotionally involved in many different aspects of life, whereas men don’t get emotionally involved in as many things in life as women do. Women are used to dealing with their emotions on a daily basis because they experience them more frequently. This is why when you hurt a man’s feelings, it almost does more damage to him than it would to a woman; he is not used to feeling those emotions, and it makes him feel weak when he does.
Men and women are both emotional beings, yet men often times have a harder time expressing their true feelings and emotions. Women are not as fearful about putting themselves out there as men are. This is why the male ego plays such a large role, it inhibits their ability to be vulnerable. EGO is our self-concept, our feeling of self-worth and possibly our biggest enemy, especially because once it’s bruised, as it takes a very long time to heal. While everyone, both men and women have egos, it seems to be that bruising a male ego comes with more repercussions and it will push a man very far away from you.
Men are like turtles. When your insides are super mushy, you need to make sure there is something super tough and strong protecting them from getting hurt. Only those bigger, stronger and more powerful can get through the shell, and once your exposed you become vulnerable. We are all afraid of being vulnerable, who wants to get hurt? No one does, which is why when it comes to dating, both men and women are guarded and play so many games. However, men still remain the ones who are most protective over their feelings because they’re effected more when they become emotionally involved.
Vulnerability is a beautiful and invigorating feeling of free-falling into the unknown, watching the crumbling walls of defense descend around you. A guarded stance doesn’t develop overnight. It’s a long process of disappointment and betrayal. It’s a wound that gets stronger every time it heals from being ripped back open.
Guarded people don’t hide the deeper parts of themselves because they want to create frustration; they hide them because they’ve shown them before and been hurt. Somewhere along the line, love let them down. They don’t love any less…they just love with caution. They make it challenging to get into their heart, because they know only the ones willing to fight for that are worth the risk. They’re remarkable people, hidden under a shield only penetrated by the love they want to believe in.
“You just stand there with a blissful smile and ignorant sense of safety. Your guard is down, your heart is open... and just like that, you get hit.”
If you only let someone see certain parts of you, when they leave it doesn’t sting as much as knowing they knew all of who you were and still decided to walk away. So a guarded person falls in love in steps. They start small and watch your reactions like a wide-eyed child. They start to believe you when you say you aren’t going to hurt them. They start to trust you, because you prove yourself to be loyal and kind. They start to confide in you, because each time they reveal something vulnerable, you open your arms and say, “I love you, and nothing could ever change that.”
Women aren’t the love slaves. Psychologists have discovered that, while men still fall in love less often than women, when they fall, they fall harder, quicker and out of love slower. And while a tougher, smarter breed of women cope better with split-ups, the new age man, just starting to appreciate the joys of committed relationships, is finding it more difficult to let go.
Men bottle things up. For most of us, our reaction to a split with a significant other is to mask the pain. You’ll either a) not think about it and throw yourself into work in an attempt to reaffirm your own worth; or b) not think about it and start sleeping around for the same reasons; or c) not think about it, get drunk and stay out until 3am, running yourself into the ground. In other words, we will do just about anything rather than confront the pain and deal with it. Men don’t analyze, we just hope like hell time will make the pain go away. Most of the intangibles that a man needs from a woman go unsaid simply because not much is expected from women on that front. We may not speak of it, but we have certain areas that if left unfulfilled, can hurt.
While female relationships are based on talking, especially about our feelings, men’s relationships are based on doing: things like playing sport, joking around, having a beer. While some men do have substantial conversations with their friends, many don’t. Talking about their pain or their problems just isn’t acceptable. It will cause many of us to feel stupid, weak, and pathetic if they discuss personal topics. As a result, men are more emotionally independent than women and are used to being self-reliant.
While women lean heavily on good friends after a break, men often do quite the opposite. They tend to drop couple friends in favor of single males who’ll go out and party with us. Sometimes you’ll avoid good friends of your ex because it’s too painful to hear how well she’s doing without you. The end result? We’re lonely and dwelling on the past.
Women don’t hurt any less than men, but our hearts are generally more open. We are naturally more vulnerable, so it’s often easier for us to start over once we have healed. Men, on the other hand, take these losses like deaths they never fully recover from. They can move on, but a piece of their heart is always missing. If you add multiple loves over the course of multiple years, they can become broken men. They are shells of the people they once were. A hurt man is just a person who can’t trust as easily, can’t give as much and can’t open his heart as fully anymore, no matter how badly he wants to.
The hurt man wants to go slow because he’s been burned so many times in the past. He wants to be sure he doesn’t make the same mistakes and have regrets later. We all get it. We want to make sure it’s real before we jump into the deep end too. However, at a certain point in life, women don’t want to casually date forever. We have a biological clock that ticks aggressively.
Hurt men have already been through several holidays, birthdays and special occasions with girls in the past. So when it comes time to treat you like you’re special, they completely drop the ball. It does a good bit of damage, leaving the current love feeling confused and unappreciated. Guys in general don’t really get all worked up about special occasions, but they make an effort because they know it will make the girl happy. If a hurt man was not appreciated in the past, he will stop the gifts altogether in his future.
Hurt men are a strange, complicated breed. They will go through the motions of wanting to be in a relationship, but without any zest or enthusiasm. They are careful with their affection, and they only get mushy when they’re really pushed or possibly drunk. This strong poker face causes the girlfriend to doubt the entire relationship. She questions whether he’s into her at all, let alone sees a future with her.
The Good Man Project, developed 4 ways in which women can hurt a man…causing them to retreat or disconnect:
1. Complaining when he’s showing honest effort – If the man is trying to learn you, don’t be so quick to bite his head off if it takes him some time. If necessary, make it easier for him. Give him a cheat code like some folks use for video games.
2. Being afraid of initiating intimacy – Men want and need to know that you find them attractive. It means a lot to have our boo thang to love and desire us with the same intensity that we love and desire them.
3. Not letting him express himself on his terms – When things are calm a man’s silence is read as being disengaged and apathetic. That’s not necessarily true. You can’t force meaningful conversation out of your man. When he is ready to open up, make sure that you’ve created a comfortable space for him to do so freely.
4. Not being present in the present moments – Men can feel abandoned and neglected too. Although most of us won’t beg for it; it’s hard to see the person we love killing themselves to be all things at once. Know that your man needs you to make time for him where he isn’t sharing you with something else mentally or emotionally.
A hurt man wants to be what he imagines men ought to be, but it never works out the way he hopes. Being a man isn't about being tough, and that's something he struggles with constantly. If he shows his weaknesses in a relationship, he feels as though it reflects poorly on him as a person. When he feels himself falling apart, his disappointment in himself makes it even worse. Instead of trying to deal with his problems, he battles with them. He could find solace in the person he loves, but he's afraid of how they might react. He's afraid he'll let them down.
A hurt man wants people to think highly of him. He wants to be looked up to and feel as though he can manage himself as well as he believes he should. His emotions, if he'd ever just embrace them, are what could make him the man he never believes he could ever be. Even when he tries to seem as though he's got himself together, he's not. He's alone. He feels as though he's battling himself constantly. No matter what he does, he can never escape. If he could open up to the person he loves…….There are so many things he wishes he could say to the person he loves, but he tends to hold them back. Just the thought of embracing his emotional side can make him feel worse about himself. It's a terrible cycle that is constantly eating away at him.
Everything a hurt man does, everything he says, it's all scripted in a way. He doesn't want to show a side of him that is too emotional. Just the fact that he has this emotional side bothers him. Sometimes, he'd rather just tear it all up and throw it away. He would if he could.