It’s Hard For Men To Talk About Their Feelings—Here’s Why

Below are 13 different reasons that may help explain why he’s been having trouble opening up to you. It’s not a simple question to answer because men hold this belief that being masculine means not showing their emotions.

Men are often taught, point-by-point, not to feel, not to cry, and not to find words to express themselves. Solving this isn’t simple, as there are so many reasons why men can find it hard to talk about how they feel.

Women Don’t Have It Easier Than Men Do

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Photo Credit: Stefano Intintoli / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Stefano Intintoli / Unsplash

Let’s debunk a belief that some people seem to hold for no reason.

Women do not automatically navigate emotional expression better than men. It would be nice if they did, but it is simply not possible; however, men are not prone to sharing their emotions.

For Now, Let’s Focus On The Men

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Photo Credit: Vinicius “amnx” Amano / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Vinicius “amnx” Amano / Unsplash

Now that we have gotten that out of the way, let’s focus on 13 different reasons why men can struggle with expressing their feelings.

Although there are tons of reasons out there, and not every man is the same, below are some commonly discussed reasons as to why your guy may not want to open up to you just yet.

It’s Not Encouraged

silhouette of man staring out at sunset
Photo Credit: Tim Marshall / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Tim Marshall / Unsplash

The first (and perhaps biggest) reason is quite simple: Men often aren’t encouraged to talk about their feelings. In fact, they’re sometimes discouraged from doing so.

Because of this, men can tend to shy away from vulnerable conversations.

So, Men Have Been Taught To Hide Their Emotions

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Photo Credit: Francisco Gonzalez / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Francisco Gonzalez / Unsplash

Men are not born without these capacities. It is because they are taught from childhood to hide their emotions. It’s seen as being “unmanly.”

Unfortunately, this is something that guys actually think about. One of my past boyfriends told me he felt really embarrassed to be crying about his grandmother’s death in my presence, and I was saddened that he felt this way. The reality is, most guys have been trained to embrace masculinity at all costs, which means not expressing emotions openly.

They’re Not Processing Their Feelings

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Photo Credit: Hello I’m Nik / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Hello I’m Nik / Unsplash

When you ask a guy what he’s feeling and he says, “I don’t know,” he’s not always lying or trying to avoid the conversation. From personal experience, this always makes me upset, but I need to remind myself that sometimes he just hasn’t thought about it and he fully doesn’t know what to say.

If you’re trying to have a conversation with your guy, give him a little time to think about things instead of putting words in his mouth. Maybe he’ll start to feel more comfortable and will open up.

Some Prefer Actions Over Words

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Photo Credit: Nathan Dumlao / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Nathan Dumlao / Unsplash

According to multiple dating psychology sites, the truth is, it takes a certain kind of man to frequently put his feelings into words for you.

Even if a guy isn’t telling you exactly how he feels, there are tons of actions that he may be doing to show his love for you.

Being Afraid Of The Truth

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Photo Credit: christopher lemercier / Unsplash
Photo Credit: christopher lemercier / Unsplash

According to Bryan Zarpentine from Bolde Magazine, “Talking about one’s feelings can lead to uncovering some harsh truths.”

Perhaps subconsciously a lot of guys worry about what they’ll learn about themselves when they talk about feelings. Even though it is best to be open about your true feelings, that doesn’t mean it’s easy to do so.

Lacking Good Role Models

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Photo Credit: NeONBRAND / Unsplash
Photo Credit: NeONBRAND / Unsplash

Many younger guys didn’t have a male role model growing up who was open about his feelings. While many women grow up around open and supportive women, men don’t have that same experience.

Most men never really learn to talk about feelings when they are younger, so they simply don’t fully understand how to do it later in life.

They Don’t See The Point

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Photo Credit: Priscilla Du Preez / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Priscilla Du Preez / Unsplash

This reason is backed up by a study done on more than 2,000 school-aged children. Dr. Amanda Rose of the University of Missouri discovered boys and girls are fundamentally different when it comes to talking about their feelings.

While most girls seem comfortable talking at length about what’s bothering them, boys tend to keep quiet as they just see it as a waste of time.

Some Would Rather Not Be Put In A Bad Mood

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Photo Credit: Matheus Ferrero / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Matheus Ferrero / Unsplash

Talking about feelings can be a total downer at times, and Zarpentine from Bolde Magazine claims that most guys think if they talk about their negative feelings, it will put them in a bad mood.

He claims that most guys will try to avoid talking about topics if it’ll help them from feeling down and depressed. This takes out of sight, out of mind to a whole new level.

Fixing Emotions As A Way To Deal With Them

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Photo Credit: NeONBRAND / Unsplash
Photo Credit: NeONBRAND / Unsplash

Men opt to solve emotions over soothing them, but this can often cause more problems. Many men want to fix their partner’s problems in addition to their own. This is because they have an instinctual need to perform, assert, and defend.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but another person’s emotions are not something to fix unless they specifically request that.

A Fear Of Judgement

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Photo Credit: alevision.co / Unsplash
Photo Credit: alevision.co / Unsplash

Men are less willing to admit their emotions, but they are also highly sensitive. In fact, research has shown that men might be the more sensitive sex, not women.

Whenever we express our feelings to someone, there is always a fear of those feelings not being reciprocated or understood. Perhaps your guy is just scared of being judged by you for whatever reason.

He Prefers To Brush It Off

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Photo Credit: Toa Heftiba / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Toa Heftiba / Unsplash

Some men also get into the habit of brushing things off instead of facing difficult feelings. Men are more solution-focused. This is basic psychology, but it’s still important to point out. According to Tara Vossenkemper, for women, discussing a problem is relieving and makes the problem more manageable.

When it comes to feelings, there aren’t really any answers. There are just feelings to experience and articulate. When faced with a feeling and no immediate solution, men try to compartmentalize it or brush it under the rug (i.e., ignore it).

They Prefer To Move Slow

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Photo Credit: Joanna Nix-Walkup / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Joanna Nix-Walkup / Unsplash

Some fall in love quickly, but maybe your guy prefers to take things one day at a time. Perhaps the reason why he doesn’t like talking about feelings is just that he doesn’t really have strong feelings that quickly in general.

For some, it can take a lot of time before they are ready to feel things, let alone talk about the feelings that they are feeling.

He’s Scared Of Being Vulnerable

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Photo Credit: Austin Human / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Austin Human / Unsplash

The idea of opening your heart and mind to share tender, vulnerable feelings with someone you don’t feel safe with can be terrifying.

Perhaps he had a really negative experience when he shared his feelings with someone in the past. Sharing your feelings leads to a deeper bond, and an even more intense heartbreak if something happens to that bond. Overall, what we all need to know is that when you’re with someone who makes you feel safe, you should have no problems letting them in and showing your vulnerable side.

Some Women Also Hate Talking About Feelings

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Photo Credit: Brooke Cagle / Unsplash
Photo Credit: Brooke Cagle / Unsplash

Guys often expect women to be the emotional ones in a relationship, but that’s not always the case.

No matter your sex or gender, some of us avoid talking about our feelings at all costs. While that method might work for casual arrangements, it definitely becomes a problem when things start to get more serious.