Men show their appreciation through achievements, women through words. In one of my seminars a woman asked, “How do you know how much a man loves a woman? They certainly don’t seem to tell us every day, do they?” I asked my husband the same question that evening. He thought about it for a brief moment and then said, “By what he is willing to do for her.” Plain and simple. In relationship coaching, this issue comes up in almost every session. Men and women show their love differently and not only does this create conflict it also causes huge amounts of pain. Women want to talk to men about their feelings. We create environments of pleasure and relaxation by sharing and talking. It relaxes us. The problem is, it does not relax men in the same way. On the contrary, it creates tension for them and confusion. Don’t get me wrong, men do want to please us, do the right thing and say the right words, they just don’t know how. They only time a man knows what to do is when a woman has shown him how. In most cases, men will remain silent and women will feel hurt. Why is it so painful when a man does not respond with attention, words, smiles, and those little gestures that make us feel better? As women, we are aware of what goes on around us at all times. We pay attention to the mood in a room, to the mood of the people in the room, we smooth out ups and downs in the energy, we smile, we touch, we play and we make sure everybody is happy. It’s a natural flow for us, it is easy and it feels good. We are used to showing our affection that way and it creates a void when a man does not respond in kind. Don’t expect him to be something he is not. You can be angry at your guy for not getting it (and be miserable for the rest of your life) or you can accept him for who he is. It’s up to you. Give him a chance to win. Men like to be heroes and they like to win for you. Let him show his brilliance and have the last word. So many women have to constantly prove that they can do it themselves. It’s exhausting. Give in and relax. Realize how much he wants to impress you, how much he revels in your admiration and enjoy your feminine power. From an article by Karin Lehmann http://shine.yahoo.com/love-sex/why-men-dont-say-i-love-you-and-what-to-do-about-it-481890.html
The most important things
are the hardest to say,
because words diminish them.
Slavery is at the heart of dysfunctional families. When people serve others because they are forced to do so, freedom to truly serve is lost. Slavery hardens the heart, creates anger, bitterness and resentment. On the other hand, true love often finds its expression in acts of serve. It is service freely given, not out of fear but out of choice. It comes out of personal discovery that “it is more blessed to give than to receive. Dr. Gary Chapman author of “The Five Love Languages”
Lack of love from parents
often motivates their children
to go searching for love
in other relationships.
This search is often misguided
and leads to further disappointment.
Dr. Gary Chapman
Once you understand that you actively seek others out to either cater to you, or to cater to, you can start taking better care of your self, and begin attracting healthier people into your life. Most often two people who have found themselves in habitual patterns of codependent behavior and thinking, cannot make a relationship work. Although it is possible, the constant policing of one another’s thoughts can be maddening. Therapy is extremely helpful in trying to break the thought patterns associated with codependent thinking. Journaling is also a useful tool, because it helps keep awareness alive. In addition it is wise to spend time with people who are free of codependent issues, as they offer the best models for relationships to strive for. If you tend to assume the role of caretaker easily, be wary of those who try to coerce you into roles that require you to take care of others emotionally, psychologically, or financially. Any time someone pushes past a personal boundary you have set, chances are you might be engaging with another codependent. In any healthy relationship, freedom of expression is encouraged not discouraged. If you find you are feeling like someone’s parent in a love relationship, it is best to graciously move on. If you are a taker, own that role and begin to understand it is no one’s job to cater to your emotional whims. It is your responsibility alone to meet life head on and to grow as a self reliant individual. It is not enough to cling to others, and to guilt partners into being in a relationship with you. Decide it is no longer enough to be someone else’s project, and head off in search of your true self. A healthy relationship is one that feels like a great pair of comfortable shoes that feel like they were made just for you. Your feet are just happier in them. When relationships are right, they fit. When they don’t they’re as uncomfortable as a size 5 shoe on a size 10 foot. From an article by Lisa A. Romano http://www.examiner.com/article/codependency-and-how-it-destroys-relationships
with the hope
“out there” can
instantly fill up
Stop missing out on enjoying time with your partner, by worrying about something that hasn’t happened, with people that aren’t part of your relationship. …stop focusing on that which you DON’T want to happen, and spend more time creating what you DO want. The universe doesn’t understand that what you are thinking about all the time is something undesirable. It takes any thought you create as a request and conspires to manifest those requests. So, if you constantly focus on the negative thoughts around your relationship, chances are you will keep inadvertently creating negative situations between you and your partner. Changing your thoughts, and letting go of the fear, makes room for more thoughts about what you really want to create in your relationship. It’s a much better way to use your energy and if you focus on how to give more love, how to strengthen your bond and create more intimacy, you’ll find you easily manifest the good loving you really desire. All of this is not to say that you should be ignorant of any intuition or signs of infidelity. If you have a feeling things have gone astray, or there are obvious signs that your partner’s focus may have shifted, then you should trust your own intuition and be willing to address your concerns. Having an honest, adult, and somewhat vulnerable conversation with your partner about what you’re worried about can be the difference between realizing you had the wrong end of stick and getting on with loving each other, or letting your mind run away with the worst case scenario and having that fear ruin your relationship. Open, mature conversation about boundaries and expectations is the only way to really approach the fear of being cheated on and a much more promising way to build a lifetime of love. From an article by Rachael Lay http://www.rachaellay.com/why-worrying-about-cheating-is-pointless/
For a marriage relationship to flourish,
there must be intimacy.
It takes an enormous amount of courage
to say to your spouse, “This is me.
I’m not proud of it — in fact,
I’m a little embarrassed by it —
but this is who I am.”
A married couple was in a car when the wife turned to her husband and asked, “Would you like to stop for a coffee?” “No, thanks,” he answered truthfully. So they didn’t stop. The result? The wife, who had indeed wanted to stop, became annoyed because she felt her preference had not been considered. The husband, seeing his wife was angry, became frustrated. Why didn’t she just say what she wanted? Unfortunately, he failed to see that his wife was asking the question not to get an instant decision, but to begin a negotiation. And the woman didn’t realize that when her husband said no, he was just expressing his preference, not making a ruling. When a man and woman interpret the same interchange in such conflicting ways, it’s no wonder they can find themselves leveling angry charges of selfishness and obstinacy at each other. We cannot lump all men or all women into fixed categories. But the seemingly senseless misunderstandings that haunt our relationships can in part be explained by the different conversational rules by which men and women play. Men grow up in a world in which a conversation is often a contest, either to achieve the upper hand or to prevent other people from pushing them around. For women, however, talking is often a way to exchange confirmation and support. I saw this when my husband and I had jobs in different cities. People frequently made comments like, “That must be rough,” and “How do you stand it?” I accepted their sympathy and sometimes even reinforced it, saying, “The worst part is having to pack and unpack all the time.” But my husband often reacted with irritation. Our situation had advantages, he would explain. As academics, we had four-day weekends together, as well as long vacations throughout the year and four months in the summer. Everything he said was true, but I didn’t understand why he chose to say it. He told me that some of the comments implied: “Yours is not a real marriage. I am superior to you because my wife and I have avoided your misfortune.” Until then it had not occurred to me there might be an element of one-upmanship. I now see that my husband was simply approaching the world as many men do: as a place where people try to achieve and maintain status. I, on the other hand, was approaching the world as many women do: as a network of connections seeking support and consensus. by Deborah Tannen http://aggslanguage.wordpress.com/you-just-don%E2%80%99t-understand-by-deborah-tannen/
The single biggest problem
is the illusion
that it has taken place.
George Bernard Shaw
Chances are, you know one. They do everything together; they share common ideals. They’re the couple that says that they rarely argue. When a disagreement comes up, they talk it out and they come to a compromise. And they live happily ever after. And you think, “If only I found my perfect match, I wouldn’t have marital problems.” While I’ll readily admit there are bad matches, good matches, better matches and best matches in marriage, many smooth-sailing marriages usually have one thing that makes them oh, so easy: a compliant spouse. A compliant spouse—husband or wife—is content to let the other spouse lead the way and make the decisions. He or she isn’t necessarily a doormat, but he usually wants to keep the peace more than have his way. Often times, he’ll suggest ideas but if his spouse shoots them down, he’ll just shrug his shoulders and go with the flow. There isn’t much true “compromise” going on: He just gives in. He takes direction well, and completes his honey-to list when asked. Leaving decisions to his mate allows him freedom to pursue other interests while relieving him of weightier responsibilities, too. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard women swoon over someone’s compliant spouse. And I guess I have to admit, I have done it, too. When your own husband has an irksome bull-headed streak, a complaint spouse sounds terrific. But do you really want a compliant spouse? Compliance is boring. It’s nice when a spouse brings his own ideas into the mix. It’s exciting to hear, “I have a better idea.” Now and then, a little giving in—for you—is good for the soul. It takes humility and love to be able to back down and let the other person get what he wants, even when it isn’t what you want at all. If you’re used to getting your way, be sure you aren’t turning into a total dictator or a spoiled brat—unless he likes it that way. These are the spouses that suddenly up and leave after long years of marriage, to everyone’s shock and surprise. They were quietly compliant but not happily so. If you have a compliant spouse, be sure to address his or her desires. Solicit his or her opinions and take them. If you keep dismissing his ideas, choices and opinions, for whatever reason however logical, he will stop offering them. Appreciate that your marital road is smoother than most, but give credit to the one who paves that way. From an article by Lori Phillips http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art5801.asp
Give me that man
that is not
and I will wear
him in my heart’s core.
In studies of more than 2,000 school-aged children, Dr. Amanda Rose of the University of Missouri has discovered boys and girls are fundamentally different when it comes to talking about their feelings. While girls love nothing more than to yap at length about what’s bothering them, boys tend to keep quiet — and not because they’re embarrassed; they just see it as a waste of time. “For years, popular psychologists have insisted boys and men would like to talk about their problems, but are held back by fears of embarrassment or appearing weak,” Rose says in a statement. “However, when we asked young people how talking about their problems would make them feel, boys didn’t express angst or distress about discussing problems any more than girls. Instead, boys’ responses suggest they just don’t see talking about problems to be a particularly useful activity.” That’s fine for school-aged boys, but what about men who know better? Rose suggests their early aversion to talking about their feelings is something they carry with them into manhood: “Men may be more likely to think talking about problems will make the problems feel bigger and engaging in different activities will take their minds off of the problem. Men may just not be coming from the same place as their partners.” So if they’re not gushing about their problems to their friends and family like we do, how do men cope with their feelings? By keeping busy with activities that keep their mind off things, says Rose. Maybe this explains why your man spends so much time in his shop/garage/man cave. It’s something positive men might be onto — it seems many of us women might actually be over-talking our feelings and making ourselves kind of crazy in the process. Females who talk their problems out too often are in danger of engaging in “excessive problem talk,” which causes stress and anxiety. It’s a classic case of completely obsessing over something that’s not that big of deal and then inevitably blowing it out of proportion. No matter what, though, communication is key to any relationship and sharing feelings with your spouse, family and friends is usually a positive thing. Just remember to be respectful of other communication styles. By Martha Edwards http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/09/06/men-talking-relationships_n_950218.html
Don’t allow your mind
to tell your heart
what to do.The mind
gives up easily.
“It is not love that is blind, but jealousy,” according to the writer Lawrence Durrell. Jealousy is defined as a fear and rage response that preserves romantic bonds between sexual partners. Its function, it is believed, is to curb infidelity between parents, which advances the survival of their children and their subsequent reproductive success. Romantic jealously is widely understood to be different for men and women because each gender has a different level of investment in reproduction. For a man to provide for genetically distant children decreases his reproductive success — and because men are uncertain whether they really are the father of said children, they are most susceptible to sexual infidelity. By contrast, women can rest assured that they are the mother of their own children; however, they are more dependent on men for resources, making them more sensitive to emotional infidelity, since it could threaten the supply of resources for herself and her child. While many subscribe to this view, the research has been admittedly inconclusive. Now, a team led by Hasse Walum of the Karolinska Institute in Sweden has broken new ground. Participants were presented with two hypothetical infidelity scenarios: “Sexual jealousy: ‘You suspect that while your boyfriend/ girlfriend was on vacation s/he had a one nightstand. You realize that even if s/he did have sex with this other person, they will probably never see each other again. How upset do you think you would feel if this happened?’” “Emotional jealousy: ‘You suspect that while your boyfriend/girlfriend was on a trip s/he fell in love with someone else. You realize that even if s/he did develop these feelings, s/he will probably never see this other person again. How upset do you think you would feel if this happened?’” They were then asked to answer these questions along a 10-point scale, ranging from 1 (not at all) to 10 (extremely). What did they find? Consistent with prior research, women reported higher levels of jealousy on both measures, and both men and women scored higher on sexual jealousy than on emotional jealousy. However, men reported greater jealousy in response to sexual infidelity by comparison to emotional infidelity. These findings square with the theory that men and women differ when it comes to the types of jealousy, that is, sexual vs. emotional. From an article by Vinita Mehta, Ph.D., Ed.M. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/head-games/201308/whos-more-jealous-men-or-women
In jealousy there is more self-love than love.
François, Duc de La Rochefoucauld
“We used to talk all night, but since we’ve talked so much, we have nothing else to talk about.” Well, this is a crossroad that every couple has to go through. You have been together so long, you have spent so much time together, you have run out of things to talk about. This is very simple to get over. But first, we must look at why you have run out of things to talk about. Ultimately, if you don’t have anything to talk about, you are becoming numb to the individual. If you truly love them, you will always have something to say to them. Even it is just “I love you.” Your conversations might not be as dynamic and powerful as they were in the beginning of the relationship. And this is simply because you know each other very well, and before you didn’t. So it was automatically exciting and intriguing. But you must realize this, and rest in the fact that you are with this person. Though you might not have deep thoughts to divulge to this person anymore, because they know them all, you still have things in common. You still have things to discuss. Some couples can sit in a room and not say a word to each other for three hours – and that’s fine with them. This is because they are grounded in the foundation of their love, and they know that though they aren’t saying anything, they are both thinking about one another. But if you feel that the lack of constant conversation is hurting your relationship, take the initiative. Make a point to talk with your partner – even if the conversation starts out light and frivolous, it will end on a good note – hopefully. And this will keep you both in each other’s mind. Remember, don’t wait for them to talk to you – talk to THEM!! The most vital and important reasons that relationships fail is because they communication that is happening is because people aren’t following “The Golden Rule.” I know you all know what I’m talking about; we learned it in kindergarten – “Do unto others as you would like them to do unto you.” If you follow this statement, your love life as well as every other part will benefit greatly. But the sad truth is, people aren’t honest. They cheat themselves as well as others. They are self-centered jealous feigns. So no wonder none of us have a satisfactory relationship. We must stop and think – how do you want to be treated in a relationship? If you apply your standards of what you want to your partner, they will ultimately reapply them to you. You are in control of how your relationship will be. By Prior Aphter http://voices.yahoo.com/why-relationships-fail-due-lack-communication-10023.html?cat=41
the termites of
Speak up and make sure you are one of the balls you juggle in life, instead of leaving yourself out. The best cure for codependence is authentic disagreement. Healthy conflict is not a betrayal of trust and niceness as is so often believed in this culture. Healthy conflict keeps dialogue intact and trust can build based on a more real relationship. The work of understanding differences is worth it in order to beat back anxiety & codependency. Those who are codependent are very afraid of being alone; there is a scramble to stuff someone else into the emptiness within when a relationship breaks up. People who are codependent mistake enmeshment for love and can’t bear to be without it. We should all recognize the old saying “you can’t love someone else unless you love yourself” as true. Being alone is one way to learn how to love yourself. Face your fears and try learning to enjoy life alone without the safety factor of a built-in partner. Give up the people-pleasing and hiding behind the false 150 watt smile. Risk more disagreement. Be willing to not be liked instead of being a chameleon. Ultimately, people who are codependent have done themselves the greatest injustice by losing track of who they are. Pay attention to being annoyed. Underneath feeling grumpy is a buried want that you are ignoring too easily. Speak up to undo the legacy of codependency. Anxious people swallow their own truth which is very stressful. It’s scary in the short-term to be more authentic, just try to remember there are tons of long-term payoffs that will make it worth it. From “Anxiety, Control & Codependency” by Rhoda Mills Sommer, L.C.S.W. http://therapyideas.net/anxiety.htm
I don’t have to agree with you
to like you or respect you.