This is more of a humanity problem, not specific to Americans. We don’t know how to communicate effectively when negative feelings may be involved. It is a very simple concept, but one that is very difficult to learn to the point of it being the natural communication style we revert to when under stress.
Consider these two conversations.
You Statement – Placing Blame
Why do you always poke around when we’re trying to leave so we can be on time?
I Statement – Sharing My Concern
When you take a long time getting ready I feel stressed out that we’re going to be late then I feel grumpy for awhile after that.
The You statement puts the receiver on the defensive because it sends subliminal messages of blame. The I statement does not blame, but shares how the sender is affected by the situation.