My sister, Seyna, asked a very pertinent question concerning the previous post.
Very interesting blog. Don’t you think it is ironic that you give advice on things that women need to change about themselves to attract and keep a man, but you point out that men will change partners before changing themselves? Just an observation.
Hope all is well.
I’m glad to see that you read the blog so attentively. It’s my hope that these writings might get people to probe a little deeper in their thinking, ask some hard questions (as you did), and get some insights as to how they could achieve more in their lives. I know you are happily married, but perhaps you might have some friends that would benefit from reading it.
Your question presents a logical inconsistency that does seem rather unfair or even chauvinistic at first glance. However, if I were to write a similar paper on how a man can “catch” a woman, it would become apparent that it is, in fact, more difficult for men, but perhaps also a little more rewarding. So I believe your question is partly a matter of viewpoint. But more relevantly, there is a fundamental difference in what is being changed, and why. Allow me to explain here.
The Goal: Assimilating into God’s Ideal Archetype Relationship
Being in a relationship is not merely about attaining a “fair and equal” business transaction – “I’ll change this, if you change that.” Sure, I will agree that the appearance of fairness is often a man’s concession to the undying vanity of the woman. However, the goal of molding the relationship to fit the Male-Female Archetype proscribed by God should be the foremost priority, and both the male and female are expected to make the required changes to this end.
So to answer your question, there are some changes related to compromise, some changes motivated by love and loyalty, and some changes required for personal growth and maturity. In other words, some things should be changed, and other things cannot or should not be changed.
I will expound upon a few of these respective changes for the man, since it was not covered in the previous post.
There are many things that a young man needs to change about himself in order to gain efficacy with the opposite sex (e.g. Frame, Game, confidence (faith), a modest amount of success), but these are things that women typically do not know anything about, nor would they overtly request. (If she did, it would be kind of scary and intimidating.) Women desire outer EFFECTS and RESULTS that a man can produce in her life, while a man must focus more on the CAUSES and MECHANICS – his own “Inner Game”!
By “Inner Game”, I mean his continual habits of thought and action that keep him in relationship with God, under the daily challenges of life, and constant “tests” from people, especially from women.
A man needs to develop himself FIRST before he can DELIVER on a woman’s demands, and if a woman is repetitively demanding something, it only means that he’s yet incapable of certain things; or worse, that this is a relationship that does not Glorify God. Either way, it is extremely distracting and discouraging from a male’s perspective. It takes his attention away from his own inner game, and makes him feel like a puppet that’s got to perform on her demand. In addition, it simultaneously creates embarrassment and social pressure that he must tolerate from her. For most men, it’s just too much. He’ll cut her loose so that he can retain his focus, confidence, and the control of his life, and maybe find someone ELSE who is more secure and will make a better mate.
A woman, on the other hand, has her own list of unique tasks, as delineated in the previous post. But concerning your question, I want to emphasize here, that it’s just plain WRONG for a woman to nag, nit-pick and make DEMANDS on a man, as a modus of control or domination. This, in itself, is an act of defiance against God’s created order, and is therefore wrong. If there is really something she needs, she should make REQUESTS (verbal), APPEALS (non verbal), and SUPPLICATIONS (display vulnerability, and reveal intentions with a spirit of trust and thankfulness), in the faithful hope of attracting love, and in a RESPECTFUL manner.
The man should be in the “drivers seat”, and the woman should be “enjoying the ride” (and “checking the map” occasionally)!
In summary of this section, a woman’s nagging, complaining, and making demands of a man is WRONG, because it detracts from the goal of attaining God’s Standards for relationships.
Next, I’ll elaborate some more on why nagging, complaining, and making demands is just plain WRONG in terms of the relationship experience.
The Purpose is to Bless Each Other (and not “Fairness” or “Change”)
We create a spiritual atmosphere with every word and deed. Every believer must come to a full recognition of this spiritual principle, if they expect to become an OVERCOMER by the AUTHORITY OF CHRIST.
Although it may not pass through your mind while you’re together, the blessing of your presence is a CHRISTLIKE SERVICE that you perform for each other. Think about the spiritual SAVOR that YOU have! It’s really NOT about RECEIVING! It’s about being a LIGHT to those around you.
Here is one important thing about discerning who is right for you. The right person will add magic to each small moment, and will fill your days with precious moments. Those memories are blessed because they are filled with God’s love, grace, and the presence of the Holy Spirit. After many years, those memories will shine like diamonds for all eternity.
On the other hand, a demanding attitude usually represents the harsh, ungrateful spirit of a person who is unwilling to give and to serve. If one person in a close relationship introduces this kind of spirit, then the other partner must do 200% of the work in the relationship, as well as conduct a spiritual warfare against thanklessness!
A love relationship cannot withstand this kind of burden, especially during the formative stages of growth. More, there are many such attitudes that will “nip love in the bud”, not only selfishness and ingratitude.
Typically, if the relationship is not “good” in the beginning, and I mean, characterized by the magical sense of “heels-over-head” “IN LOVE”, then HOPE is dim. Perhaps it was never meant to be. But if there is some magic to begin with, it can be nurtured and exercised. (I hope this is intuitive knowledge.)
Of course, no one is perfect, and we all help “carry” one another from time to time, but if the nagging and complaining is a continual, daily HABIT, it’s like the Chinese dripping water torture. Eventually, one will ask himself whether it is all worth it, especially the cost of opportunity – missing out on that magical love with someone else.
In a nutshell, it all comes down to how the relationship affects the other partners’ connection to God – and it either improves, or it crumbles. Status quo is a slow erosion.
Discerning the Truth
Whenever you are assessing the value of a relationship, you’ve got to ask yourself some of the following questions…
- What is the “quality” of this person’s “service”?
- Does this person fill my life with “diamonds”, or with “gravel”?
- Does this person’s presence in my life enhance my daily relationship with God?
- Does this relationship stimulate and encourage my spiritual growth?
- Do I feel loved?
- Do I feel confident?
- Do I feel secure?
- Is this the companionship I want to be “stuck in” for the rest of my life?
- Are the benefits of this relationship worthy of the precious life-time that I will trade for it?
It’s important to note that the other person will be asking themselves the very same questions about YOU! You might have very high expectations from your partner, but meanwhile, your own service may have become so bad, that your partner is almost ready to try Buddhism; or even dump you completely! (Don’t laugh! It happens more frequently than you’d think!)
A lot of “Christian” people will tell you that “feelings cannot be trusted“, and their point is that we should not make major decisions based on transient emotions. [Eds. note (Nov. 8, 2017): For a pertinent, well known example, there are too many ex-carousel riders who use the excuse of “feelings” to justify cuckoldry and frivorce theft.] There is an important point to be made about the importance of faith over feelings, which is theologically CORRECT…
But let’s get real.
Few people in this day and age would marry someone they HATE, just because their faith tells them that getting married is the “Christian” thing to do. Now, if those feelings characterize your ETERNAL relationship to God, or a LIFELONG commitment to a spouse, then these feelings are no longer so very transient! After a while, they will become a part of you, and will affect your whole life! [Eds. note (Nov. 8, 2017): I am not justifying divorce based on emotion. Unhappiness in marriage should be a goad to face the truth and get your act together. In other words, reclaim what you had in the beginning. What I am saying is…]
You’ve got to make your peace with God, before anything else, at any price! But that is a foundational requirement. We’re already presuming that we are believers.
Here’s a great example of what I’m saying. Ask any professional tennis player how his game is going, and he’ll start talking about “feelings”. If he “FEELS GOOD”, meaning confident and alive, then his game is good! [Eds. note (Nov. 8, 2017): Here, feelings represent the discernment of one’s state of being. They are an indicator that something is going on, not a harbinger of the future. Just because he “feels good”, doesn’t mean he’ll win the tournament.]
More specifically, if you ask a tennis player how he chooses a good tennis racket, he won’t say anything. Instead, he will pick up a racket, grip the handle and swing it in the air a few times, and then grab another and do the same thing. After a minute, he’ll say something like, “This one feels better. It’s lighter, more balanced, etc.” If you ask him what he is doing, he’ll say something like, “The feeling is everything!”
There’s no need for a profession from a professional, when he can show you faith in action.
Hey! Feelings DO, and MUST, accompany faith, and you’ve got to tap into that POWER from Jesus, if you want to win your games!
Being single is the time when you should be “choosing your racket” and learning how to PLAY the game of love. After you choose a partner, then you’ll be playing professional DOUBLES tournaments. Like I mentioned in the previous blog, your ability to “play TOGETHER well”, largely determines your level of success – whether you’ll “win or lose”.
In a more carnal sense, it’s a mating game. It’s kind of like a man is in competition with himself, and with other men; and the woman is the winners’ prize. A woman who aggressively demands changes in a man would automatically bump herself lower on the prize level category. (He’s thinking, “THIS racket is not so well ‘balanced’!”)
Whereas, the women who are really desirable as mates usually know it, and they are the women who set up and control the competitive bracket by letting themselves BE PURSUED and selecting the better men as mates. These women know how to RESPOND to men, and how to move IN CONCERT with his every move, so that these men (along with their partners) will WIN GAMES in life!
So you see, the women who can master the three qualifications that I wrote about in the blog, really do have a lot of power and influence in the mating game – maybe even more than men!
If the goal of the relationship is simply “fairness” and “equity”, then I have to concede that my viewpoints are not constructive. Instead, my post pursues a different and more advantageous goal – one that asserts the necessity of conforming to God’s Archetype for male-female relationships. This model is superior because it attracts the benefits of God’s purposes and promises. As a result, both parties can gain a sense of love, respect, grace, belonging, blessing and fulfillment.
On the other hand, God did intend for the man to be the head over the woman, and so it’s quite common for men to play the trump card (dump her and move on), whenever a woman becomes too unmanageable, or requires too much maintenance, compared to what she brings into the relationship. Women dump men too (and at endemic proportions, these days).
Of course, my description is very abstract and theoretical, and crude at that. I only hope to shed some light on the basic processes that are at work. You may like to talk to Adam about this, and get his perspective as a man.
Dalrock: Are real men attracted to boisterous, opinionated women? (September 8, 2016)