Some couples will still decide to divorce, but at least their decisions will be based on realistic expectations. I believe these systematic differences in childhood socialization make talk between women and men like cross-cultural communication, heir to all the attraction and pitfalls of that enticing but difficult enterprise. He said, "You like me to look at you when we talk, so I'll try to do it. Sociologist Catherine Kohler Riessman reports in her new book "Divorce Talk" that most of the women she interviewed -- but only a few of the men -- gave lack of communication as the reason for their divorces. Since they don't assume talk is the cement that binds a relationship, men don't know what kind of talk women want, and they don't miss it when it isn't there. Tannen argues communicating effectively is key for a long marriage. How do You like Friends to Help?
Previously, she had accused him of not listening, and he had refused to change his behavior, since that would be admitting fault. If she didn't keep the conversation going, we'd spend the whole evening in silence. The impression of not listening results from misalignments in the mechanics of conversation. In my own research, complaints from women about their husbands most often focused not on tangible inequities such as having given up the chance for a career to accompany a husband to his, or doing far more than their share of daily life-support work like cleaning, cooking, social arrangements and errands. Women's conversational habits are as frustrating to men as men's are to women. This is heard as disloyalty by women, and refusal to offer the requisite support. And this pattern is wreaking havoc with marriage. Women who feel abandoned and deprived when their husbands won't listen to or report daily news may be happy to discover their husbands trying to adapt once they understand the place of small talk in women's relationships. Virginia has been a university English instructor for over 20 years. Tannen argues communicating effectively is key for a long marriage. My research on men's and women's conversations uncovered patterns similar to those described for children's groups. The pattern was observed by political scientist Andrew Hacker in the late '70s. Tannen's research shows that men do bond, but it is by negotiating in a more competitive environment where listening for too long makes them feel they are put down, and where they share problems in order to have a friend give them solutions or to be reassured the problem isn't important. Men and Women in Conversation. Linguistic Battle of the Sexes How can women and men have such different impressions of communication in marriage? The main point she wants people to understand in most of her work is that misunderstandings can often be cleared up if people are taught to read the way other people communicate differently. But often when women tell men, "You aren't listening," and the men protest, "I am," the men are right. Once the problem is understood, improvement comes naturally, as it did to the young woman and her boyfriend who seemed to go to sleep when she wanted to talk. A parallel difference caused a man to complain about his wife, "She just wants to talk about her own point of view. The second-grade boys teased, told jokes, noticed things in the room and talked about finding games to play. When you share a problem with a friend, do you want them to: But men live in a hierarchical world, where talk maintains independence and status. Instead, they focused on communication: Sympathize by telling you a story of a similar problem Give you suggestions for how to solve the problem Just listen carefully and sympathetically Tell you not to worry about it so much, it isn't that bad. Write the main ideas of the article in your own words. But the boys dismissed each other's problems.
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