Why men tune women out

Posted by Ria, 26 Feb 10

“Does he even listen to me?” “If so, does he forget so easily?"

This is what most women feel about their partners. However, this does not mean women aren't guilty of not listening either. Its just that since we are such mouthfuls, we tend to notice when you... space out in the middle of our 'interesting' stories. Here are some two conversations that cracked me up:

Husband: Hi dear, how are you? Wife: I broke my back! Husband: Glad to hear.

Your perfect partner could be online right now...

What are you looking for?

Wife: So how are the kids? Husband: Well little Johnny was bitten by a poisonous snake, and Debbie's pregnant again. Wife: That's swell dear, did you make the mortgage payment today? Husband: No, I've decided to run off with the money and the neighbor's wife. Wife: Glad to hear dear. By the way, I'm going to keep the mailman's baby. Husband: Yes, he's a good man and always brings the mail on time.

- AskMen.com

After reading that, I realized most people don't listen. I am guilty of doing some selective attention myself. When Dr. Robi Ludwig, Today.com contributor asked her male friends about men’s ability/inability to listen, most agreed “It’s because you gals don’t get to the point fast enough.” Apparently its all about our conversation style. Here are some of the reasons cited:

  • Women talk too much.
  • The assumption that he's heard it all before.
  • They feel their partners are yelling or nagging them about something.
  • Mind wandering to more interesting thoughts
  • There are more pressing matters in his personal life to attend to.
  • Distraction: There was a ball game on telly.
  • Or simply: Bad hearing.

Communication is a key component to the success of every relationship. Since not listening makes couples get on in each other's nerves; and as they say, its our brains that are to blame for that humongous area for word production and word use (for women - or less of that for men) how are talkers and non-listeners supposed to make their relationships work? .

Men, what are we suppose to do to avoid that are-you-done-yet look whenever we open our mouths?

14 responses to "Why men tune women out"

Leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

  1.   rae56 says:
    Posted: 02 Jul 10

    "Tuning out" is what got my dad through nearly 65 years of marriage, lol! My mom always said that he had "selective hearing" and she was right - he had to have because she NEVER stopped! By the time I got out on my own, I had also developed selective hearing. :) Like Sailor, "I find that I tune out when Im not able to get a word in."

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  2.   Bbbw4IvoryU says:
    Posted: 01 Jul 10

    Everyone's comprehension is different, as well as their communication methods. Even men and women that I know have issues with not communicating effectively. If this is the case, there are easy ways to inform ineffective communicators that they lack respectable social skills. It's a matter of decency, respect, and attentive sharing when communicating with love ones. It's not rocket science people! It's just listening and responding respectfully.

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  3.   anonymous_1 says:
    Posted: 30 May 10

    Its true men her what they want to her, excuse me let me change that some men here what they want to hear or just give you any answer so you can stop bothering them... wow..

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  4.   maxhb says:
    Posted: 06 Apr 10

    Tuning out is not intentional if I do it. If I can't take the stress of the day I go out for a movie or a drive. Most of the time, she just wants me to listen to her. Not solve anything, not answer, just listen, just be there and at times its hard because I see things she doesn't. The whole exercise is about listening. I think when she doesn't get that, there is a frustration, a tirade. I know I get frustrated when she has to take racist abuse in the business world and in the part of the society that resents our interracial relationship. and I cant protect her. So I listen and try to get her to let go and get it out of her system. I wish I could get back all the tuneouts i've done before I learned this.

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  5.   NOPLAYER says:
    Posted: 03 Apr 10

    It's all about TIMING!!!! There's a time and a place for everything and that includes your wanting to unload verbally on me. As men we have alot thoughts that we're trying to process and this requires some heavy thought and planning, so when you come with something outside of that, I'm sorry you might not get through. It's not that men dont value your feelings or we dont enjoy talking with you but often times we become so focussed on trying to provide for and secure our wives and children we get zoned out or caught up in our thoughts. It's hard on us when women come trying to add more on top of all that wer're trying to deal with, so something has to give (get tuned out) and more than likely it'll be you and your talking about your drama at work. You got a job and money coming in so whats the problem? Now should you tell me something about you wanting to quit, then you got my full attention because now the THREAT-CON LEVEL is a CODE RED (loss of extra income in the house beep beep beep)! I'm all ears now! Baby wait a minute lets talk about this one. LMAO Now if you come at me with a lecture about me forgetting to take out the trash, hell yeah I'll TUNE YOU OUT because if you haven't received a notice in the mail about our home going into foreclosure, that's because I REMEMBERED to pay the mortgage, can a brother get credit for something! If you come talking about the children being upset with me because I tore they asses up, YOU'LL GET TUNNED OUT, because maybe your precious babies deserved that ass whipping and because of me, maybe one day the police wont have to beat they asses, so be grateful you got a "take charge type of man"! If we're getting ready to go out and it's taking you two f*#king hours to get ready and you come asking me about is this dress too short or too tight, I'll TUNE YOU OUT because at this momment I'm pissed off because it's taking you so damn long to shower, do your hair & make up, put on a dress and a pair of heels! Other than that you have my full attention because I love the sound of your voice, it's a turn on and I value the beauty of your thoughts when communicated to me. Just my two cents!

    Like or Dislike: or 0 ()
    Reply to this comment
  6.   maxhb says:
    Posted: 22 Mar 10

    I want to first ask, why would you chose a partner who is closed to communication ? Is it sex ? dancing, TV, and movie choices ? It is a matter of your priorities not your partner's reluctance to communicate. I just walked away from a passionate relationship because of the line that was drawn in communication by her. She shuts down, mute, withdraws. Not a stupid person but driven by some past incident that formed their behavior neurotically. But still it is a matter of choice. If you truly want a qualtiy bond, pick someone who listens and doesnt stereotype you into a corner.

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  7.   party1 says:
    Posted: 08 Mar 10

    Maymiedoll,Thank you so much for your blog even though the last sentence might have been TMI lol but the point understood.

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  8.   maymiedoll says:
    Posted: 04 Mar 10

    Intimacy, have found, is the key. Both parties should speak to each other in an intimate tone. Being overly expressive or yelling has never gotten us anywhere except in the doghouse--and that can be taken in many respects. When you have a "couple," in a "LOVE," relationship, communications should always happen at an "intimate and caring," level. Speak softly. Look into each other's eyes--even if the conversation is about the results you got when you took Trixie to the vet today. I have found men generally respect and are drawn to women who use that tone of voice and visa versa. When a man speaks to me in an intimate tone AND uses empathy I want to tear his clothes off and do absolutely unspeakable things to him. mmmm

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  9.   RayneDelay says:
    Posted: 04 Mar 10

    Men would be wise to tune us in. Women are smarter than men. Well most of us are anyways. They should learn to trust our intuition as well.

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  10.   canadiangc says:
    Posted: 03 Mar 10

    thought the title said turn out not tune out guess I wasn't listening

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  11.   terry5159 says:
    Posted: 02 Mar 10

    communication is the key to a healthy relationship.if u suspect ur partner is in a fowl mood wait till theyre relaxed 4 u to bring out the issue.learn to listen and not just talk.timing should also be right,not when someone is watching or a soap-opera.patience

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  12.   Thick_Lover says:
    Posted: 01 Mar 10

    This made me laugh when I read it, but also I recognize my own self in it! Communication compatibility -- funny but more important than I thought previously. And those reasons were bang on! Funny! Bottom line: it's a two-way street. Both have to come up with a solution to make the communication better! Good topic!

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  13. Posted: 27 Feb 10

    I find I'm tuning out when I'm not able to get a word in edgeways and the person's talking about things that are utterly disconnected from either us or things that are even of interest to us. My advice is to listen and be engaged with your partner in conversation. Conversing with another is a discovery of your common and intriguing thoughts and that takes understanding and a focus on the other. If you need to hear yourself talk, do that in your car but not with others: Anyone worth spending time with is worth knowing. It's similar to writing well in that it's easy to write a ong papper on a subject but it takes effort to write it clearly and concisely, unlike what I've just done!

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment
  14.   homesteader says:
    Posted: 26 Feb 10

    Men / Listen ; Women Talk , we also have Too much to say at the same time . Yes ! sent the hearing-aid for repair this past month / Duh . You only hear what you wanna hear , Television Too loud alas without hearing-aid turn it up too high or cannot hear at all , LOL . At times we feel that the load is heavy on all our thoughts . There are so many things on My mind at one time / 61 years of life and hardly ever even forgot a telephone number . As others say / We all see the Daily misgivings that are in others eyes . Our minds weigh these deep thoughts continuiously / yet due to Experience , we dismiss these Issues as a total waste of our time . Myself , I build Dream Castles Daily . Places far away that I have seen while touring high above the Highways . Ideas , thoughts and One must eventually take the time to draw the Blueprints of Future construction work . Have material piled to build a Deck 14' x 42' . Move Our Gardentub and hook to existing plumbing lines . Yet , first have to survey / run level lines . Stakes stringlines and digging a trench for drainlines . Soft rock on the radio / computer contests , lunch soon enough . Questions and I have no answers / raining while I S.Shave and Shower , should I have washed hair in the rain ? These are things that will make Our lives more comfortable . Delivery trucks / packages expected tomorrow - yet delivered today , Hehe . While attempting to Hear what my wife is saying about everyday things . A man's mind can only gather so much . Sexual thoughts every 4 or 5 minutes / My God where does the time go ? I am Retired and do knot even have to think about paperwork , routes , speed-limits , traffic and seating in crowded restaurants when finally I find a spot to park that 53' trailer . Yet these are still on my mind , Okay Pizza today for lunch . Gonna go turn on the oven . See Y'all in my Sweet Daydreams . BRB , Hehe .

    Like or Dislike: or 0 (0)
    Reply to this comment