Stop Trying to Fix It, Just Listen

Dr. Gail Gabbert

As a marriage counselor I frequently hear couples complain about poor communication. Although it could be either the man or woman, it is most often the woman who says he never listens, he is always trying to fix the problem for her.

There is a YouTube video that captures the strained couple’s dynamic beautifully. It’s called “It’s Not About the Nail.” In the video, the couple is sitting on the couch and she describes a pain in her head that won’t go away. She wants him to understand her pain and she cuts him off when he tries to offer a solution. The scene expands and we see that she has a nail in her forehead. He is as frustrated trying to address the source of her pain as she is in her search for empathy. She says “It’s not about the nail” meaning that she doesn’t want the problem…

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