This post is with so much grace and love for Men challenged with this, I am right there with you. Behaviour is a funny thing.
We are told what is good and bad behaviour, we are told your behaviour hurts me, change your behaviour. I want to say, I believe humans are fundamentally good. I have met very few people that TRY to have poor behaviour.
Then the question needs to be asked, why do we exhibit poor behaviour?
If we as men want to care for, love, cherish our partners, why do we say and do things that are simply, not ok, sometimes horrible and mean to the woman we love? Why do we the next day say oh crap, why did I say that? Or, why cannot we OWN our behaviour, say sorry, I will do better, I will change me behaviour?
I believe men WANT to have good behaviour. It’s the wounded child within that is the issue.
What does this mean? It means we all have things from the past that we carry, and sometimes ( ok alot of the time ) we bring them into the present and cause havoc on our relationships. Your inner child is your feelings and emotions, your outer child is a 12 year old big brother doing his best to protect your inner child’s feelings.
Let me tell you, ME, the grounded man would never say those things to women, but I allowed the outer child to take over, that’s on me. I have wrecked, ok, no maybe more accurately, destroyed romantic relationships by allowing my outer child to decide what my behaviour is.
As men, we need to learn how to handle our internal emotional needs, because if we don’t, part of our nervous system hands the wheel to the outer child, and he does some messed up stuff to protect your inner child. That’s the thing to know, your psyche is trying to protect you. It’s automatic.
We are at a huge disadvantage because WE SIMPLY AREN’T TAUGHT HOW TO NAVIGATE OUR FEELINGS.
Your partner is not your mom. Your mom helped you with your feelings (or maybe she didn’t which makes this even HARDER) but as a man, that’s 100% on you, but what are you doing to take care of your feelings? Once you can see what you are doing, APOLOGIZE. I know for me, I did not see the damage I was doing so I did not apologize often enough, that was a difficult thing, because the outer child does a good job of justifying behaviour.
All is not lost.
1-Own your behaviour.
3-Start learning the skills to change. (which is actually healing work, you as a man learning how to take care of you emotional core so that the outer child doesn’t decide how to take care of your inner child-you do)
This takes a NEW level of humility too, you can do it. It’s not weakness, it’s power.
It’s ok, not your fault, but it is 100% your responsibility now.