The 10 Most Aggravating Things About Black Men

WHOEVER said it’s the little things that mean so much could have been talking about the little aggravating things that can wreak havoc in even the most loving relationships.

Now, that’s not to say that the man of your dreams no longer makes your heart beat faster, or that the special lady in your life can’t still make chills run up and down your spine. But it would be nice if she could manage to have dinner on the table when you get home or if he realized the proper place for his dirty socks is in the hamper and not in the middle of the floor: Like the pierce of Cupid’s arrow, these little annoyances can certainly sting.
If left unchecked, relationship experts say, these minor skirmishes between men and women can escalate into an all out war between the sexes. On the following pages, marriage counselors and family therapists offer their best advice for overcoming the 10 most aggravating things in a relationship.

1 HE NEVER CALLS WHEN HE SAYS HE WILL. This is the lament of nearly every woman who has spent long, frustrating hours sitting by the telephone waiting for the new man in her life to call.
Dr. Joyce Hamilton Berry, a clinical psychologist from Washington, D.C., says the problem is simply a matter of poor communication.
“Men communicate differently than women do,” Berry explains. “Men say they will call you later and that can mean the next day or the next week. Women assume that men mean before the next day.”
If women want to avoid becoming upset when the telephone doesn’t ring, Berry advises that they simply ask the men what they mean by “ later.”

2 HE SPENDS TOO MUCH TIME HANGING OUT WITH THE BOYS. When a woman complains that her man is spending too much time with the boys, she is expressing her feelings of insecurity about the relationship, experts say.
“The woman fears that the man lacks sufficient commitment to the woman and the relationship,” explains Dr. Maisha Hamilton Bennett of Hamilton Behavioral Healthcare in Chicago. “The woman thinks, ‘If he is hanging out with the boys, then maybe he chooses them over me - in fact, maybe he doesn’t care about me at all and doesn’t want to be with me.“‘
Dr. Frederick B. Phillips, a clinical psychologist and executive director of Progressive Life Center in Washington, D.C., says it’s important for Black women to support friends among Black men.
“Women need to understand the importance of peer bonding and the importance of mutual support among African-American men,” Phillips says, “especially in a culture that does not support Black men.”

3 HE NEVER SAYS HOW HE REALLY FEELS. From time immemorial women have tried to get men to open up and reveal what is in their hearts and on their minds—without much success.
“Men are embarrassed about showing their true feelings,” explains Dr. Nathan Hare, sociologist, clinical psychologist and co-founder of the Black Think Tank in San Francisco. “They feel the display can be interpreted as a sign of weakness. A man feels that his presence alone is enough to let a woman know how he feels.”
Some men, however, refuse to open up for fear they are going to be criticized by women.
“Frequently, if men tell women what they are feeling, the women start recommending what men should do or start to criticize them for what they’ve done,” Dr. Berry says. “If women would listen more and be more accepting, maybe men would talk more about what is going on with them.”

She thinks the occasion calls for a suit. He says a sport coat and slacks are just fine. Let the arguments begin.
“Men don’t spend a lot of time trying to master the skill of what to wear to which function,” says Dr. Hare, “because dressing well doesn’t carry as much weight for men as it does for women in this society.”
Dr. Bennett says a woman who constantly complains about what a man wears is displaying her “need to mold the man into her image of who and what he should be like.”
To avoid the problem, Dr. Berry advises that couples discuss what the proper attire should be well before the scheduled event.

5 HE THINKS HE HAS MAID’S SERVICE. In this age of two-career couples, women are looking for men to help out with household chores. Yet, some men resist running the vacuum or loading the dishwasher unless they are specifically asked.
“The man has gotten used to not doing anything from the cradle on up,” Dr. Hare points out. “If, as a child, he only sees his mother picking up things and bringing the tray table to his father’s TV chair, he is going to be like his father. When he becomes an adult, he is going to sit in his chair with his sixpack, watch the fights and lets the woman bring everything to him.”
Dr. Berry concurs. Most men are products of their home environment, she says. In many of their childhood households, the mother was the one who took care of the house.
“Frequently, women don’t ask for what they want for fear of rejection,” Berry says. “What women do is hint: ‘I would just love it if I came in and dinner was fixed’ or ‘I’d be excited if someone cleaned up the house.’ Women need to ask men specifically to vacuum, wash the dishes or wash clothes, rather than hint.”

6 HE DOESN’T KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SEX AND ROMANCE. The woman who lodges this complaint, Dr. Hare says, is essentially saying that she wants her mate to spend more time on foreplay in leading up to the sexual encounter.
“May research has shown that most Black women are generally satisfied in their s&&ual relations with Black men,” Dr. Hare allows. “However, many Black women say that are not as satisfied with their interpersonal relationships with Black men. They need to be reassured that their mates find them desirable and that’s where the romance comes in.”
Some men are less interested in romance, Dr. Berry maintains, because they don’t need to be seduced in order to perform sexually.
When men are younger, it takes no time at all for them to become sexually aroused, Dr. Berry explains. So that man most likely satisfies himself first and then turns his attention to the woman.
As men get older, Dr. Berry says, it takes them longer to become sexually aroused. “That’s when they learn how to be lovers,” she says “and become more responsive to women.”
Dr. Berry advises that a woman can encourage her mate to become more amorous by letting him know what he can do to put in a romantic mood.

7 HE’S ALWAYS LOOKING AT/FLIRTING WITH OTHER WOMEN. What do you do when your man has a roving eye and a seductive way with words? Let it roll off your back, experts say.
“If a woman overreacts, a man can get a lot of enjoyment out of doing something that makes the woman get angry,” Dr. Berry observes. “He can just sit back, smile and say, ‘I don’t know why you go off the deep end when there’s nothing to it?’’’
Dr. Berry also stresses that a man’s flirting may be in response to the coy or seductive way a woman has spoken to him.
Dr. Hare says the man’s behavior is more innate than intentional. “A man is naturally attracted to what he sees,” he explains. “He is more turned on by appearances—both the actual physical appearance as well as the imagined appearance. A partially concealed body is often more enticing to men than a totally revealed body.”

8 HE DOESN’T PAY ENOUGH ATTENTION TO ME. Some women crave constant attention from their mates and feel unloved if they don’t get it. But the apparent lack of attention, family therapists say, has more to do with the way a man perceives a relationship than a conscious attempt to ignore the woman.
“Men think that just being there is enough,” Dr. Hare stresses. “He doesn’t feel the need to talk all the time, to say, ‘I love you,’ or to give her all this ritualistic affirmation.”
If a woman is feeling unappreciated, Dr. Berry suggests she treat her man the way she wants to be treated. “She should take the initiative to send flowers or cards.”

9 HE SPENDS TOO MUCH TIME AT WORK. Why can’t he just come home on time? Everyone else is gone for the day and he’s still slaving away.
“Black men are under pressure to succeed,” Dr. Hare stresses. “Where women have fought for the right to work, men have had no choice. He cannot be a full, honorable man if he does not work.”
Still, he says, some men use the excuse that they have to work late as a cover for other activities. “He can be very busy not doing what he is supposed to be doing,” Dr. Hare says.

10 HE NEVER TAKES ME ANYWHERE. A woman who levels this charge is either uncertain about her mate’s feelings for her, psychologists say, or has a legitimate complaint about a lack of quality time.
A woman may think a man is hesitant to take her out because he doesn’t want to be seen with her, Dr. Bennett assesses. “The woman thinks, ‘Maybe he doesn’t take me places because he is ashamed of me, my appearance and my style; maybe he doesn’t really enjoy my company; maybe he’s meeting someone else.’”
Yet, Dr, Phillips says couples need to look at what is being implied in the statement. “It may not be that he doesn’t take her anywhere,” he says. “The issues may be about quality time, feeling wanted and feeling needed in addition to be taken out.”
For couples who have fallen into a rut, Dr. Phillips advises that they break their routine and get out of the house and enjoy one another

Posted by loni on 09/14 at 02:02 PM in Blogging

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