The Women Speak: 10 Things I Wish Men Understood
- Candice Atherton Women's Channel Editor
- 2000 8 Jun
In an effort to promote understanding between men and women, we have given both groups the opportunity to share their side of the story. The men went first with their Forum "10 things I wish women understood and have blazed a trail toward mutual understanding.
One of the hints we women received has been very practical: "Get to the point." So in that spirit, our feedback for the men is provided in two forms below. First you'll find the "10 things" highlight reel of which gives you the general areas where more understanding is needed. Then you'll find a more specific list which includes actual quotes from the women's forum and some practical suggestions, (the romance section especially provides some great recommendations.)
At the risk of delaying the "point", there is one observation I would like to note regarding the differences between the men's and women's lists. As you read the women's list, you will probably notice that a tone of anger is prevalent, an issue that presents a challenge to both sides:
- Women, are you blaming men for your unmet needs instead of relying upon Christ, the only one who possesses the power to fill you up?
- Men, are you doing everything you possibly can to make her feel like she's cherished?
10 Things I Wish Men Understood
Spiritual Life - When you put God first, many aspects of your relationship with us fall into place.
Crisis Control- In the midst of conflict, some courses of action work better than others
Communication - We all know this can be a sticking point between us, but there's no doubt that it endears you to us when you're listening to what we say and sharing with us.
Hidden Meanings - Ideally, there shouldn't be hidden messages behind our words, but in the event that you encounter these scenarios with any of the women in your life, we want to give you the inside track.
Sex - Here are some ways to increase your returns.
"I love you." -- This is one form of communication that can't be overlooked.
Romance -- Yes, in our minds this is different from sex, and just as important. So the ladies have provided some tips.
Everyday hints - Here are some practical suggestions that might help you understand a woman's perspective.
Don'ts - There are some common traps that will only get you into trouble. . .
Fathering - Your influence upon our children has profound effects upon the whole family
Now, for those who are interested in the specifics:
1. Spiritual Life:
"PRAY WITH ME."
"TRUST- We cannot trust you if you do not trust yourselves- Put your trust in the LORD!"
"A woman loves for her husband to be a spiritual leader in the home. If you love your wife as Christ loves the church then she will be respectful, submissive and love you as the Bible teaches."
2. Crisis control
"Sometimes I just want to vent, so please don't try to fix the problem, just listen, that's all, just listen."
"When I am worried and upset about something, I usually want you to take me in your arms and assure me of your love and encourage me to trust in God. "
"Do not allow a conflict between you to last long, keep peace, forgive her and resolve conflicts quickly."
"Please LISTEN when we talk even (especially) if it's a topic of non-interest to you. Nothing is more annoying than to have to repeat something we just said 5 minutes, 5 hours, or 5 days ago. "
"Share and exchange emotions, passions, thoughts, and fears. The Bible talks about this when it talks about men being compassionate toward their wives."
"If we make a suggestion out of love on something we would like you to improve on, don't take it as an "attack," don't simply reply "I'm doing the best I can," and don't say we're "nagging." This indicates denial that you are human and could improve in some areas. It also shuts out the woman in your life by creating a fear of ever expressing a need or concern."
4. Hidden Meanings:
"The following phrases 'It's nothing', 'Whatever', and 'Forget about it' all mean that we really want you to question us to get the truer meaning behind the statement.
"If I'm upset and I leave the room it DOESN'T mean that I want to be left alone...it means chase me and find out what's bothering me."
"If I ask 'Do I look fat?' or 'Do you like (fill in the appropriate appearance factor)' what I really mean is 'Compliment me!'
"If you're 'in the mood', give me a little romance please! I don't mind initiating once in awhile, but God built women to be responders, and with just a little attention from you, I can give you 1000% of what you're looking for!" "Amen"
"Women like sex more than you think....just not as often as you do maybe!! Just understand that with her it is a purely emotional attraction (as long as you are already staying clean and combed and shaven!! ha.) Satisfy her emotional tank and she will be attracted to you sexually later."
"Even if she isn't interested in it that night, be patient and love on her anyway, and trust me, it won't be long."
6. "I love you."
"Tell her 'I love you' everyday."
"She wants to be your best friend, she wants your marriage to be all that it can be, BUT not out of some misplaced idea that it is a chore or duty - it should be with Joy in your heart."
"Tell her how you feel about her out of the blue (I know you think about why you love her, and you realize it... but say it)."
"I would say stop listening to what everybody says 'WOMEN' like. Take the time and effort to find out what the woman in your life likes and dislikes. Let yourself to be led by God to be the man He has called you to be and learn about the woman He has sent to you."
"Make a simple phone call in the middle of the day. I appreciate hearing from him when he is away- whether he is at work, traveling, or even out on the golf course. Regardless of the length of the call, it says I am in his heart, mind and soul and not the familiar adage "out of sight, out of mind." After all, I am understanding when he thinks about work at home, so why not show he thinks about me at work?"
"Be romantic, leave a love note or do something unexpected, this melts a woman's heart."
"Be romantic without being told to be romantic. Bring home a single red rose. Pack a Saturday picnic and go to the park. Put on a CD with a great song and just hold your wife during it. Be spontaneous about sex... and don't just think the bedroom and nighttime is when it's wanted. Run your wife a bath, buy her some aromatic body wash or foot scrub and massage her back and feet... she'll thank you for it big time."
8. Everyday hints
"We both live in the house, we both contribute to the mess, and we both work outside the home. So why is it considered solely my responsibility to clean it?"
"We do appreciate what you do to help out, but do wish you wouldn't treat it like you're doing us a favor. "
"Give our homelife 100% like you do your job or your favorite hobby. Don't bring us home a doggy bag. "
"Treat my job as if it were just as important as your job...especially if I'm a stay-at-home mom. We don't make money like you do, but what we do is important enough to be included in God's Word (see Proverbs 31) It would cost a lot of money, to hire somebody to do what we do all day long for free."
"Please do not compare us with other females in your past/present, we're not them, we're unique unto ourselves, and we're not replacements for Mom, Ex, or Deceased. "
"Please don't show your sexual amorousness in front of the kids!!! (In other words, don't try to pinch her all sorts of places, follow her around with goo goo eyes...)"
"I wish that men understood that if a man wants to be 'just friends,' then he shouldn't treat a woman like she's more than that to him. I have been hurt many times by men who were very romantic while in the 'getting to know you' dating phase, then decided that he wanted to be "just friends" at just the point when I was beginning to think, 'Gee, he really seems to like me -- maybe this is somebody I could get serious about.' "
"Know that you are the biggest influence on your children. I may be with them all day and night but they will take after you. Yes, even the girls. Your actions in your life are teaching the children and (guess what) ME. We all learn from you. Even if you have a Phlegmatic temperament you choose your actions. We (your family) are looking to you for guidance and need to see a good example."
"I find you very attractive when you are tender, playful, and reading to our children. A father who is actively demonstrating his love for his children is very sexy to the mother who bore them. :)"
"Assist me with the children, they need you just as much as they need me. Besides, nothing can beat a bedtime story that is read by 'Daddy!'"
The bottom Line
Basically, we acknowledge the differences between us and recognize that bridging them requires effort from both men and women. Hopefully, this list will be helpful to you as you forge a frontier that presents great challenges and even greater rewards.
Click here to Respond in Men's Forum or read more results from the Women's Forum.