Yes, I know, there is a time in every wife class where someone will, in all honesty and frustration, blurt out that wonderful line: "But he won't tell me what he wants." I know, believe me, I know. I don't tend to tell my own wife, either.

Why? Well, because that is not how men work, generally. Men, generally, do not like to speak a lot. In studies, the speech area of men's brains is small and compact and (oddly) entirely in the left side of the brain. When men speak, they pretty much use only their speech center. Women, on the other hand, use a lot of their brains when they speak (and both sides of their brain). Oral communication seems to come more easily and pleasantly to women than to men. 

Think of the men and women you know. In my life, I have known many stutterers, all of whom were male (studies show the male-female ratio is about 4:1) . I have know a lot of people who use "uhhs" and who repeat themselves a lot, most of them were male. I have almost never met a woman who muttered in such a way that I could not hear her, but I meet such men all the time. There are just not as many speech problems among women as among men.

Men tend to "think things out" before they "talk things out." When a woman asks a man "what do you want me to do," he usually cannot really answer. Why? Because he was not thinking about that question. He was thinking about work or food or the things he needs to do, not about what he expects from you. When you ask him the question, his first thought is probably not "what do I want" but "why is she asking me this question?" His answer is more likely to be what he thinks will keep him in good status with you, not what he really wants to say. 

Instead of looking for words, look for what he does. Look at how he responds to things you do. Watch his face and body motions as he goes through his day. Men tend to exhibit their feelings more through their behaviors than through their words. He is more likely to hug you than to pour out words of appreciation. He is more likely to act snarly than he is to snarl. 

Men have learned, over the years, that there is very little positive that comes from many of their conversations with women. Telling women "what we want" usually ends up with us being accused of being insensitive or sexist or "pigs." We have learned to keep quiet in many cases. If your guy isn't telling you in words, though, he is telling you in other ways that you need to learn to read. 

Women often want men to  read "clues" and figure out what they want. So, let's try it the other way around, and figure out what he wants.

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