Seriously, though, I get so frustrated with him when he doesn't listen to me that it drives me crazy. One of our BIGGEST problems is that I will tell him something and he will get the details of what I told him wrong. I can't tell you how many times he will come back from the store with something that is slightly wrong when I made it a point to stress to him what kind of whatever I wanted. For example, I tell him to buy brown rice and he comes home with regular white rice. He will swear until he is blue in the face that I DIDN'T say BROWN and I will assure him over and over that I did.
There are other times when I need his input or want his opinion and he asks like he doesn't care. THEN when I make the decision on my own, he is upset with it and says we should have talked about it.
I know my husband loves me and isn't doing these things just to drive me even more insane . . . so, what gives? What am I doing wrong?
I did a little homework on the subject and thought I'd pass some of these suggestions on to you - they really do help when there is something that you need to talk about and want to really make a lasting impression or get some REAL feedback!
1) Eliminate Distractions - Not only will it ensure that you are being heard and that nothing will prevent a response BUT it's just the polite thing to do! Seriously, put the phone/iPad/Kindle/Laptop down and turn the TV off. Talk to each other when the kids aren't around to bother you. It might not be easy to find the perfect time but it will be worth the effort because it will be so much more effective.
2) Set a Time Limit - Women like to talk. Men usually don't like to talk as much. Therefore, setting a time limit (which you should stick to) makes it easier for your man to give you his undivided attention. Say to him, "Can we talk for 15 minutes or so?" and he knows that you respect his time and that you appreciate him giving some of it to you! (It wouldn't hurt to let him know that, either)
3) Share Some Good News - Don't bombard him off the bat with complaints or start asking him a million questions. Tell him something funny the kids did or share some good news you got while talking to your mom or friend on the phone. Ask him to share something good about his day, too. Then LISTEN to the answer . . . .
4) Ask For What You Want and Say What You Mean - I've learned something about my husband . . . he doesn't pick up on hints and he doesn't understand hidden meanings. If I want something, asking for it is the only way I will get it across to him. I also can't expect him to read between the lines when I'm talking to him. If I don't say what I mean then I can't get upset if he didn't "get it".
5) Stick to the Subject - Remember, you only have about 15 minutes . . . if that was your "time limit" . . . so stick to the subject and don't throw other questions or agendas into the discussion. I'm not saying don't "confuse" him . . . but don't confuse him.
6) LISTEN - I said listen before and I'll say it again because women are quick to complain they aren't listened to but they don't always listen . . . it's true. You have to give your husband time to think and time to figure out what he's going to say. You are ready for the talk and he needs a little bit of time to catch up so be patient and give him time to process!
7) Don't talk if you should H.A.L.T. because someone is - Hungry Angry Loney or Tired :)
Remember above all that you are on the same TEAM and you are in this together!
Good luck! I know that I'll be using some of these to help me and DH talk a little more and get a little more accomplished!