Group of men

Dude Skill #2: TALK – Part 3



When Amie and I were first married, we talked about everything. I shared with her my hopes, dreams, and fears. It was natural and effortless. Over the years, we have lost ground in this area. Not because of her, but because of me. It has been a subtle shift, but I have found it increasingly difficult to open up to my wife.

If you are anything like me, your hopes, dreams, and fears are often wrapped up in your work. Back in 2002, we moved from Kansas City to start a church from scratch in St. Louis. In the first few years after planting the church, Amie was heavily involved. As our family and the church grew, I thought it was sensible to shield her from many of the concerns I was dealing with day in and day out. I reasoned that she had enough to deal with on the home front.

This seemed to be a legitimate way to protect Amie from my workplace chaos, but if I’m honest, I was also protecting myself from her. Sometimes I left her in the dark because I didn’t want her to challenge and critique my plans. I kept my cards close to my chest so she could not use them against me. Maybe you can relate.

The other day I was watching one of those dozens of reality shows about police investigations. The officer interrogating the suspect had a simple method: get the guy talking so that his words revealed the truth. the more the unsuspecting suspect talked, the m ore obvious it was that he had committed the crime.

I can almost guarantee your wife does not intend to lock you up. She’s probably tying to get you to talk. My counselor does that. he asks a ton of questions to get me talking and expose my real issues. It is scary to be exposed, but it is also freeing. It takes courage to be vulnerable!

Interpersonal Awkwardness

Men don’t often know how to ask the right questions to engage the hearts of their wives. For years, I tended to ask questions that could be answered with one word. This tendency was illustrated in the Seinfeld sitcom in the ’90s. Jerry was trying to set George up with Nina, a good friend of his. George asked why Jerry and Nina had never dated. Jerry answered that they got along so well together as friends and there were no “awkward pauses.” George jubilantly replied, “I’m all awkward pauses!” A lot of husband are like him. They were never taught and, therefore, failed to learn how to ask leading questions to bring out the best from their wives. Too many marital conversations are forced, uninteresting, and painfully awkward.

Verbal Exhaustion

After engaging their coworkers all day long, many husbands just don’t have any rich words in the tak for their sweet wives. the husband’s word tank is almost on E, and the wife is experiencing fuel injection at 5:00 pm.

The reality became clear to me when I was in graduate school and Amie was teaching music to middle schoolers. She spent most of the day teaching the same lesson several times to three hundred kids. She barely had any adult conversations. I spent all day in adult conversations as I went through my cohort based program with twelve others. We spent nine hours a day interacting with one another and various professors. On top of that, I was teaching. I was all talked out by the time Amie came home hoping to have a conversation with an adult. It took us years to figure this one out.

Group of men
Multi-ethnic group of young men holding together and laughing.

Male Jargon

Men don’t know how to talk to their wives because they are only good at talking to men. I have two sisters, but growing up, I didn’t have to deal with them much because they were ten and twelve years older than me. I mainly talked to male friends. Only around the seventh grade did it occur to me that I ought to learn how to talk to ladies. I admit that my purpose in talking to girls wasn’t exactly wholesome in those days. This, coupled with the fact that I didn’t have any close friends who were girls through high school and college, made talking to my wife a big challenge.

In my next posting I will take a look at what our wives would really like us to talk about.



Soul health and spiritual maturity cannot be separated.  Our counselors are ordained Christian ministers as well as certified and licensed Christian counselors.  We are able to help you experience freedom from shameanxietydepression, or marriage / relationship conflict with methods that are purely Christ-centered.  Please click on this link to learn much more about how our MARRIAGE COUNSELING can help you become a more authentic follower of Christ, and help you find freedom from identity dependence.

Life Training offers convenient sessions at office in Louisville, Kentucky, as well as online counseling via Zoom or FaceTime.  Our non-profit counseling practice has had an outstanding track record from over a decade helping men and women, individuals and couples who are ready to move beyond anxietydepression, and conflicts in marriage or other relationships find hope and healing in their lives.  Contact us today at 502-717-5433, or by email at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *