Oct. 7, 2009 -- That women are hard to understand is a common complaint from men. But to be fair, men can be just as mysterious.
From addressing the issue of men saying one thing when they mean another to lying because it's simply easier, comedian and author Steve Harvey stopped by "Good Morning America" today to answer questions and bring insight from inside the mind of a man.
Men sometimes go to great lengths, from ditching work to playing fantasy football to giving befuddled looks when women ask how those jeans really look, in an effort at self-preservation.
"Women actually think men are afraid of them," Harvey said. "We're not afraid of you. We're afraid of your reaction."
Duane, 34 and single, told Harvey he was frustrated over a conundrum men have faced for decades: Why do women say they want men to tell them the truth but then get mad when the truth comes out?
Harvey said the main cause of this debate is that men and women think differently.
"They're actually asking you for the truth as they see it," Harvey said, adding that it's up to the man to figure out what her truth might be.
"If there wasn't such a rage behind the truth, we'd tell you all the time," he said.
While Harvey didn't advise dishonesty, he counseled men to consider thinking carefully to avoid the inevitable argument that may come from telling women something they don't really want to hear.
"It's not really that the guy's lying or that he's a liar," he said. "He's trying to keep peace in the house."
Avoiding Conflict and Finding Time to Listen
Gabe, 24, was looking for a gentle way to tell his girlfriend his honest opinion.
"When my girlfriend is wearing something I really don't like … it's kind of hard to tell her about it. What do I do, how do I say it? How do I tell her?" Gabe asked.
The time to strike, Harvey said, is before she leaves the house.
"You don't tell her that you don't like something she's wearing, especially if she's already left the house," Harvey said. "You got to ride this one out."
Harvey suggested choosing another time when the lady is wearing something her significant other likes, the tip is to shower her with compliments. Then, Harvey said, the man can break the news that the previous outfit maybe wasn't so hot.
Other questions for Harvey came from men who wanted advice on how best to handle situations in which wives or girlfriends get upset.
"What happens when your wife calls you and says, 'I'm having a nervous breakdown.' What do you do?" asked Steve Schultz.
"When a woman calls you with something like that, kind of in a panic, first you have to address it," Harvey said, adding that the first concern is to make sure she's OK.
But if the panicked calls come every Friday before happy hour, Harvey said, that's just a diversion tactic.
"Mostly when a woman goes to the extreme like that, a woman wants attention," he said. "She just wants you to listen."