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Analysis of You Just Don't Understand, Men and Women in Conversation by Deborah Tannen

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Analysis of You Just Don't Understand, Men and Women in Conversation by Deborah Tannen


In the first chapter of her book, You Just Don't Understand, Men and Women in Conversation, Deborah Tannen quotes, "...studies have shown that married couples that live together spend less than half an hour a week talking to each other...". (24) This book is a wonderful tool for couples to use for help in understanding each other. The two things it stresses most is to listen, and to make yourself heard. This book opened my eyes to the relationship I am in now, with a wonderful person, for about four years. It made me realize that most of our little squabble-like fights could have been avoided, if one or the other of us could sit down and shut up for a minute to listen. Most of our fights had erupted from a misunderstanding or miscommunication on either of our parts, and we're only dating! I can only imagine the conflict two partners would have in a marriage with children. This book outlined a lot of couples' problems, where they may have started, and how to circumvent them. After starting to read this book, I realized to do a book report on the entire book would be very difficult, so I chose situations that most related to me to report on.
Intimacy is a very important when dealing with people trying to minimize their differences and attempting to reach a compromise. Independence is also a virtue you need to get any kind of status in today's ranking world. In order to get any kind of rank you need to be demanding, tell others what to do, and the act of taking orders is a sign of low rank in society. Everyone needs both intimacy and independence, though women concentrate more on the first and men more on the latter. This c...


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... and skills to help — even though he didn't.
Many women not only feel comfortable seeking help, they also feel honored to seek it, accept it, and display gratitude. Men on the other hand feel honored to fill the request for help, whether or not it is convenient for them to do so.
Ms. Tannen's book was both interesting and informative to me, and my relationships, not just with my boyfriend, but also my parents and other friends. I am usually one who expresses opinion freely, sometimes forgetting who else may be in the room. I also discovered that I interrupted in conversation quite a bit, and didn't even realize I was hurting my boyfriends feelings. You Just Don't Understand made me interested in how men's and women's minds work differently, and to open my mind to the possibility that what I say or hear may have been perceived differently than intended.


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