I rather enjoyed this article called, “Why Women Leave Men They Love: What Every Man Needs to Know”
I’m sure it is not going over well in certain quarters because it implies that men may bear some responsibility in their relationships and it challenges the idea that women are just nuts or psychotic or downright evil….
It commits that ultimate no no, it implies that there may be some rational and reasonable explanation for the decisions women make, a cause and effect at play here.
I’m chuckling simply because this feels like such a “duh moment,” like it has become so fashionable to simply declare women to be crazy, as if our behavior has no rhyme and reason, and to invent vague evo-psych theories like hypergamy or hormones, or worse, the curse of Eve, because obviously women just be nuts.
Some of us yes, indeed, stark raving mad, but for the most part no. We actually do require an emotional connection of some sort within our relationships and without that they die, and we die inside.
Consider this one paragraph, “Women leave for many reasons, but there’s one reason in particular that haunts me, one that I want men to understand: Women leave because their man is not present. He’s working, golfing, gaming, watching TV, fishing…the list is long. These aren’t bad men. They’re good men. They’re good fathers. They support their family. They’re nice, likeable. But they take their wife for granted. They’re not present”
I totally get that. Not “present.” It’s a form of emotional abandonment. Men often crave stability, familiarity, routine, while women crave connection, relationship and change, or movement. It’s a Divine comedy, but men and women are often the polar opposites of each other. Half the fun is figuring out how to make it work.
Should women leave perfectly good men, those the article declares are good fathers, support their family, nice, likeable? No, not at all, that’s a tragedy, but simply denying the problem and blaming women is no solution at all.
I loved these lines in the article, “You win her over first and foremost with your presence, your aliveness. She needs to feel it. She wants to talk to you about what matters to her and to feel that you’re listening to her…..”
“….She wants to feel your passion. Can you feel your passion? Can you show her? Not just your passion for her or for sex; your passion for being alive. Do you have it? It’s the most attractive thing you possess…”
“….I’m talking about five minutes a day to be completely present with the woman you share your life with. To be completely open– listening and seeing without judgement. Will you do that?….”
Now isn’t that the sweetest thing ever? This is not about asking men to be subservient, teary and emotional, or great romantic poets, it’s simply about taking five minutes a day to relate to a wife as if she were an actual human being and not just the mother of your children or your wife or a piece of furniture in the room.
Trying to explain to men what it means to be “present,” can be somewhat challenging. My hubby is wonderful, smart, charming, but even he has been confused about this. “I’m here,” he used to say, while watching football, completely baffled by the definition of “here.” He is more than content with my presence and nothing more. The thing is, for many women, “here” and “present” are not literal concepts, we are not talking about time and space, but rather an emotional connection. We have to “feel” the men in our lives.
And women, wives have to understand that men cannot read our minds, that they do not always speak our language, and we must communicate these things, we must help him to understand what our needs are, what we are asking for. We must take responsibility for our own happiness, too.
The guy who wrote this is a marriage counselor and as he says, this reason haunts him. It haunts me too because it seems like such a waste, such a tragic reason to throw away a marriage, to break up a family, because this is fixable, this is a communication problem, and there can be great joy on the other side of it.
I wrote a while back about women who are “dying inside,” because that concept was being dismissed and demeaned in some quarters. It is vitally important however, because women tend to reflect and multiply what we are given. Listen to the words this guy said once again, Can you feel your passion, your passion for being alive? If you cannot, your wife probably cannot either.