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How can you get a guy to open up?
Dating / 10:15 PM - Friday July 23, 2010

How can you get a guy to open up?

My boyfriend and i have a great relationship. The only issue for me is that I can't get him to open up to me. He wants to know everything about me and help me with any issues I have, but he won't ever tell me what's wrong or how he's feeling. Any suggestions for getting him to break down this wall?

- Asked by A Thinker, Female, 29-35, Calgary, Student

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Sure, dump him! lol! How unbalanced the relationship is for you to be open & he's clam city! That is so lame for guys to hide their emotions or feelings from a woman they supposed to love & trust.
You shouldn't have to break down any walls with anybody! What a waste of time & energy!

- Response by syncaset, A Creative, Male, 46-55, Dallas, Artist / Musician / Writer

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Watch "Silence of the Lambs" and steal the lines Hannibal Lecter uses on Clarice Starling, "Quid pro quo, Clarice". He made a game of only revealing small poieces of himself until she would tell him about herself. Though hopefully the guy isn't too much like Hannibal Lecter.

- Response by april4eliot, A Guy Critical, Male, 56-65, San Francisco, Self-Employed

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Most guys will open up whenever it is they feel safe to do so.

Create that atmosphere...that does mean that you don't ask the just leave the door open for him to give the answers...and then really "hear" him. Through his filters, not yours. Preconceived notions are not allowed. :)

- Response by mamom04, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 56-65, Phoenix

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It's just not easy for men. He may never be able to open up. It's not's him!

- Response by sunlady1120, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Self-Employed

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This isn't about him. This is about you.

Force someone to open up and they will resent it.


- Response by bluegenel, A Mr. Nice Guy, Male, Who Cares?, Technical

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The best answer I can give is if he "opens up" and tells you a problem he has, then what?
Unfortunately most women will say I will listen and do nothing.
Which is what she wants him to do when she tells her problems but for men 99.99% of the time is the wrong thing to do. Frankly, what most women will actually do if he talks about his problems is gossip aboout it with all her friends and then lose respect and love for him. Happens all the time.

Only ask him his problems if you are willing to drop whatever is going on and physically help solve it.

- Response by jjcabin, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 46-55, Washington, DC, Technical

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I think you have to just let him do it in his own time, when he wants to and feels comfortable. Men aren't as into sharing emotions as women are and they will only do it if they feel like it's a safe environment to do so. When he does share something about how he feels, no matter how small it may be, be very open and listen willingly - don't question or push or try to dig out more, let him know he can tell you things and you will just listen. He will open up more and more.

- Response by christywinter97, A Creative, Female, 36-45, Artist / Musician / Writer

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Its going to be hard, i know i'm the same way it took my ex almost 6 years before i opened up to her fully. He wants to be seen as ur superman, and if he has things that he can't fix himself and he goes to you, he feels that he wouldn't seem as strong to you. Best advise would be to keep at him but don't push... the more you push the higher the wall will go, make it so he wants to talk to you not that he has to. he'll open up soon enough

- Response by A Mr. Nice Guy, Male, 26-28, Boston, Military

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You can't break down a Man's wall. The fact that he is listening to you, wanting to know about you and is putting that effort into it ..that's huge!

Men tend to keep things inside. They like to think, They dont want to be broken down.

If you try to change him the only thing that is going to get broken is your heart.

If he is asking you about yourself, and wanting you to be open then go for it. He is learning about you. He is listening and taking it all in.

At some point he is going to come around a little and he may never be a big talker. He might always get quiet when things are bothering him. He might also be very quiet when he is looking forward to things or making possitive change.

That is normal for a Man. I would have to suggest that when you talk to him, let him know that you're there to listen and you care. That might be enough for him.

Some day some of that wall will drop all by itself.

Please don't put him.

- Response by lovesgoldens, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 36-45, Who Cares?

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The answer is very simple, but I'm afraid that it's probably not what you want to hear. The fact is that there's really nothing you can do to *make* him open up to you if he doesn't want to or doesn't feel ready...and in most cases, asking a man to talk about what he feels is unlikely to be helpful because this culture still doesn't encourage boys to experience and discuss their feelings (the reverse is more likely to be true). Instead of asking him what he feels, try asking him what he thinks instead.

Like it or not, the decision whether to tear down this wall or not is one only he can make. He's the only one who can live his life, so he's ultimately the only one with the prerogative to decide how it will be lived...even if you don't understand or agree with his choices. Likewise, it's your prerogative to decide whether you can accept him and love him as he is *now* even if he never tears down that wall. If you can't or aren't prepared to do that, then giving him up and letting him go might be the better course of action.

While you can't *make* him tear down that wall, what you can try to do is encourage him to do so -- not through words, but primarily by showing him that he's truly safe with you. One of the best ways of doing that is by making it clear that you love him and accept him just the way he is, that you respect both his right and his ability to make decisions for himself. If he feels that he can truly be himself with you with no danger of losing your respect or your affection, he *may* -- and I'm emphasizing that word deliberately -- begin to open up a little more as time goes on. However, there are no guarantees and the choice must be his.

- Response by giginyc, An Alternative Girl, Female, 46-55, Who Cares?

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