How Men and Women Communicate Differently

by Gideon Hanekom
January 14, 2019

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Men and women communicate differently because they are essentially different creatures. Many people don’t want to hear or acknowledge this, but the reality of being different as men and women plays a huge role in our relationships and love lives. But the moment a couple truly starts “getting” this fact, and applying it to their life, things start to change for the better.

But, HOW are they different?

That’s the million-dollar question.

And WHAT can we learn from it that will benefit our relationships?

From Biblical times to the present there have been countless books written about how men and women are different.

Only today can researchers and psychologists quantify those differences by using imaging techniques to identify the different reactions in the brain.

Men really are from Mars and women, from Venus, as John Gray wrote in his famous book.

Men have completely different communication styles than women, which means gender communication differences.

And, unless you know and understand these gender communication differences, you can easily shut a guy down and vice versa.

Men and women communicate differently

For example, what women see as connecting and engaging, many men interpret as intrusive and aggressive.

Men function better in reading actions while women function better in communicating with their words.

Men were the hunters in the family and many of the women took on the role of gathering.

Two different functions, two different communication styles and the two shall never meet or be the same.

Instead, men who want to connect with the women in their lives must learn something about talking about feelings to the point that they may be able to fake it well.

On the other hand, women who really want to know what their men are thinking about must learn to read their (men) actions better.

Talking about the daily activities and arranging schedules isn’t communicating; neither are disagreements and arguments.

When you can learn to read what the man or woman in your life is telling you, it can make your relationship much stronger.

How men and women communicate differently


If you’re a woman reading this, then watch your man’s body language during any of your conversations.

Sometimes they are distracted from a long day at work, but over time you can get a good idea of how they are feeling about things, including you and your relationship together.

Do they meet your eyes, hold your hand, keep their voice calm while talking with you, or cross their arms.

And while you are watching their body language remember that they are experts at reading yours!

They take their cues from HOW you say what you say and not necessarily WHAT you say.

Men grow up learning that their success in any aspect of life is based on their self-assurance and self-confidence.

When you talk about what is hurting you or what you want to see change, they feel ashamed for not being able to satisfy you.

Or at least, guys who care, do.

Satisfaction doesn’t happen only in the bedroom.

Good men are wired to be in tune with their partner and be able to provide for them – from the bank account, friendship to the privacy of the bedroom.

When he feels as if he’s failed in that, he feels he has failed YOU, and that can cause him to withdraw or get defensive.

If you want to connect with your man, you really need to understand this.

Beating him up further, by questioning his ability to provide and take care of you, will only make him shut down and become defensive.

And yes, even offering him support, help or advice can be seen as you telling him, “he has failed.”

You don’t offer a man help unless he asks for it.

Instead, it’s important to connect with your guy first in the way that he understands: through actions.

Some of the simplest things we do that are nonverbal are our deepest moments of intimacy.

When he feels connected he’s inclined to talk more and women are more apt to talk less.

It’s time to start thinking more like a man to get him to talk more like a woman!

For example, imagine what it must be like in his shoes to initiate sex and never know if he’ll be rejected or accepted.

It can be super demoralising or embarrassing.

But, as a guy, he’ll most likely just pretend he doesn’t care or hurt in silence.


Now, conversely, if you’re a man reading this, it’s equally important to understand how women communicate.

When she starts a conversation about her feelings and you shut down or turn away, or display disinterest, she instantly feels rejected.

And yes, that includes giving her advice or trying to solve her “problem.”

She doesn’t want a solution when she’s telling you something … or everything … all at once!

She wants your undivided attention and support, in the form of listening.

As a man, you need to understand that women relate and connect through talking.

Talking is her way of working through stuff and lowering her stress levels.

To get her to open up and show you more affection through action, it’s time to think more like a woman.

Make her feel that she is safe with you, and it is safe for her to open up and share her feelings and thoughts unjudged and uncensored.

And you don’t have to have any answers or solutions.

Just listen, support and be present.

Women are different from men in this regard, so it’s crucial to avoid the temptation to be her fixer.

You’ve got this!

About the author 

Gideon Hanekom

Gideon Hanekom is the creator of, a renowned relationship blog that ranked among the top 50 relationship blogs and top 100 marriage blogs in 2021. The blog is dedicated to providing valuable insights on cultivating healthy relationships and love in daily life. Gideon holds a Master's degree in theological studies and transitioned into professional counseling almost a decade ago. In addition, he completed graduate and post-graduate studies in Psychology at Massey University. With over seventeen years of marriage to his wife and two children, Gideon brings both professional and personal experience to his relationship advice. His articles have been featured on respected platforms such as and The Good Men Project.

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