It starts off like a regular date with your guy. You get dresses, thinking you’ll have a great time, but he arrives in a funky mood. He zones out, or snaps at everything you say. Or he just looks distracted. What’s going on in your guy’s head? What can you do to avoid this mood from escalating into a fight? And what can you do every day to get him to open up and tell him what’s really bugging him?
Skip the mindgames
In general if he’s in a bad mood then don’t bring up any sensitive topics—you’re just asking for a fight. But what can happen is that even a conversation can turn iffy. Admit it: sometimes we don’t tell our guy what we really want. We hint or go around the issue, expecting him to read our minds or play detective. But while many women are afraid of being too direct, most men hate it when we’re not. So when our guy shuts down in the middle of an argument or when we’re dropping one of those heavy hints in a conversation, it could be him just thinking, ‘I give up. I don’t get it!’ and the silence is the equivalent of waving a white flag.
He wants some romance too
We expect our guy to surprise us with roses and do all sorts of sweet things, but it’s exhausting to always be the knight in shining armor. Your guy wants to be romanced too., especially if he’s having a tough week. Once in a while be the one to initiate the sex, plan the romantic getaway, or surprise him with a sweet gift at work. So if he’s in a mood, the worst thing you can do is to complain that he’s not giving you enough attention that day. Maybe it’s time for you to give him attention!
He’s not always as tough as he looks
Women have an easy time opening up after a hard day. We also are vocal about wanting to be babied and comforted. Men may have similar emotional needs but have a harder time saying so. Try to be sensitive to subtle clues that he needs more affection to get through a turbulent week at work. What we think is ‘grumpiness’ or ‘shutting me out’ may be his way of saying, ‘I’m feeling down.’ Also boost him regularly with compliments and spontaneous affection. Everyone, even the toughest of the tough guys, want to feel appreciated.
Be careful of sounding overcritical
Sometimes it’s not what we say but how we say it. If he started out in a good mood but suddenly turned cold, ask if you said something that may have put him off. The best thing is to tell him in a nice way and in a non-threatening way. He still needs to feel that he can be himself, and you’re not trying to change him into something he’s not. If he feels attacked then he will shut you out, even if you only meant to give him constructive advice. (Read our article on how to give good constructive criticism.)