Man Talk: Can a man be too sensitive?

By Tim Houston

It is 2016, and relationship expectations are changing with the times.

The old-time notion that a man should be strong, rugged and rough around the edges is changing. The modern day woman is now looking for a man that is sensitive but not too sensitive. How sensitive should a man be? How much emotion is too much? What is the standard a man should aspire to? These questions should be addressed. The ability for a man to openly and honestly share his emotions may be the subtle distinction that separates the good men from the bad.

A man must be sensitive enough to notice the changes that take place within. In the natural world, once you plant a seed, it goes through various stages of change. When the seed is below ground, it needs covering, and when it is above ground, it needs support. Every significant change that takes place begins in the heart of the earth. A good man, like good ground, is sensitive to the changes that take place in their environment.

The man must be sensitive enough to provide what you need to be safe and secure. In nature, the natural elements can be harsh and severe. The seed must remain in the heart of the soil where it can be protected. There, the seed is sheltered. Good men must carry those they love in their hearts, protecting and providing for them spiritually and emotionally. This is a requirement from God. “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (I Timothy 5:8). This is the standard for a good man. He must be sensitive enough to share his emotions, but not too sensitive that he disregards yours.

And the man must be sensitive enough to provide you what you need to feel supported. This is more than merely providing a safe place to live. Once the plant is exposed, it depends on the soil for balance and stability. Good men, like good soil, will not let you fall. They will cover you when you are down, and they will support you when you are up. They must know your dreams and encourage them, and they must know your passions and embrace them. A good man cannot be imitated by your success. On the contrary, he welcomes and supports it.

When is a man too sensitive? A man is too sensitive when his emotions only allow him to be aware to his own needs. This man’s sensitivity only focuses inwardly. A good man must be perceptive enough to be in tune with your needs as well. His sensitivity focuses outwardly. Your need for support, protection and acceptance are paramount in his heart. He laughs when you laugh, sings when you sing and cries when you cry. He understands your boundaries and respects them. He is aware of the things that take place below your emotional surface. How sensitive should a man be? He should be sensitive enough to really and truly be in tune to the spirit of who you are.

Timothy Houston is an author, minister, and motivational speaker. For questions, comments or more information, go to

November 15, 2016
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