Men Are More Romantic ??
Men are the more romantic of the sexes. Don't believe me? According to Leil Lowndes, author of How to Make Anyone Fall in Love with You, men fall in love faster (20 percent by the fourth date), are more idealistic about love, are less likely to initiate a breakup, and are three times more likely to commit suicide after a traumatic breakup.
Men may be less likely to remember anniversaries and Valentine's Day, more reticent when it comes to saying "I love you," and stingier when it comes to splashing out on expensive gifts, but they're as soft and mushy inside as anyone when it comes to the importance of love in their lives. It's just that they're less likely to talk about it and more embarrassed to show it!
Here's what some ordinary men have to say about what love means to them (source: Men, Love & Sex, David Zinczenko, New York: Rosdale, 2006, p.101).
"We like presents and backrubs, too." --Shaun, 29
"Love is great and men feel it as much as women, but we might be embarrassed to admit it." --Garrett, 27
"Love doesn't need to be talked about in order to be present." --Dom, 38
You can help men along when it comes to commitment and declarations of love with these three Top Tips for helping him recognize how crazy he is for you.
Tip #1. Make It Easy for Him to Declare His Love
I hope that you never get into the situation that my friend Emily found herself in. She dated a fantastic man for three months. They'd set the ground rules up front: this was about having fun. She wasn't sure if she was going to stay in the city, and he wasn't sure if he really wanted a serious relationship. Yet they were so happy together that all their friends remarked on it.
Then one of his former lovers came back into his life and was willing to say the words that Emily wasn't: "I love you and want a life with you." When the dust settled, he chose to return to his former flame. The night they split up, Emily finally confessed that she had loved him and just never found the courage to say it. Worst of all, he'd felt exactly the same way.
If they had been able to say, "I love you," back when it mattered, would it have made any difference? I think so. Men need reassurance before they do something as drastic as declare their love for someone. They don't want to frighten you off, either.
Some men are naturally quiet and will happily let you do all the talking in the relationship. It takes skill and patience to create an environment in which he feels comfortable confessing his innermost thoughts. He has to know that you'll listen, not interrupt, and not take anything he says the wrong way.
To help you create that perfect romantic environment, here are 6 of my Top Male Communication Tips:
- Allow the silence to stretch. It can take some time before the thoughts in his head find their way to his tongue. Allow him time to get the words out.
- Don't jump to conclusions. A confession of love is not a promise of commitment. If you've been pressuring him to commit, he may not want to tell you he loves you, because he'll worry that you'll take that as a sign that you're virtually engaged.
- Be careful when you tease. Although men usually enjoy a woman who will bandy words with him, there is a time and a place to be playful. You don't want to wound him inadvertently and discourage him from sharing intimate parts of himself with you again.
- When in doubt, make eye contact and smile. Your body communicates more than words. Encourage him with positive, affirming body language.
- Share your feelings about his favorite topic: him. Compliments open the door for more compliments. While you're on the topic of how great he makes you feel, he might just return the favor. (Just don't start talking about your future, as that will make him nervous. Keep your compliments specific to concrete things he did or said that made you feel great.)
- Keep what he says to you in confidence. Most men are naturally private people. They'd prefer it if you didn't share everything they said with your best female friend, your mother, and your hairdresser. If he tells you that he loves you, keep it to yourself for a while. The best person to tell the world how he feels is him.
Tip #2. Do Your Best All the Time
One thing that men (and women) hate is being taken for granted. Show him that you appreciate him. Don't take his presence in your life for granted. If you find yourself being critical or short with him, then take a step back and ask yourself whether it really matters in the big pictures. If you find yourself no longer making an effort to dress up for him or do the little things that please him, then you may have just given him an unfortunate glimpse of what a life married to you would be like.
One reason that many men give for their reluctance to get married is that they believe that their girlfriends will change when they become wives. They'll stop wearing lingerie to bed, lose interest in sex, and replace spontaneous, wild nights out with boring and predictable evenings in front of the television.
Moving a relationship from the casual stage into marriage takes effort, no doubt. But, sadly, most men and women give up when they're halfway there. They stop making an effort. They get locked into a routine. They stop praising each other in front of strangers. In other words, they start acting like a couple that's been together too long.
You don't have to be lovey-dovey all the time, but you do have to respect, admire, and make an effort for your partner. Even if you don't feel well, avoid the temptation to take it out on him. Our partners all-too-often become convenient punching bags when things go wrong.
When you show him that you are going to be the same woman whether or not you're married or just dating, he can confidently make the decision that he wants to spend the rest of his life with you.
In fact, David Zinczenko has a great one-sentence formula to explain what men want in a long-term relationship:
"Love us like you've known us for years; surprise us like you've known us for days." (Men, Love & Sex p.172)
Tip #3. Excite Him with the Possibilities of the Future
One thing that couples in love do all the time is fantasize about what they will do together someday. Perhaps they'll go on a vacation to some exotic location. Maybe they'll give up their jobs and start up a business of their own. Maybe they'll win the lottery, build their dream house, or simply get every single season of Friends on DVD.
Whatever it is, it doesn't matter. What's important is the sense of a created future.
If a man can imagine being with you in five, ten, or twenty years, then he's training his brain to associate his future with you. I've often heard men say that they realized that they wanted to get married when they couldn't imagine their future without their then-girlfriend.
Help the process along by sharing your goals and dreams with your partner and encouraging him with his. If you've been content with simply going to work each day, coming home, eating dinner and watching television, then make a change starting today. Maybe you'll want to start a fund to buy a house. Maybe you'll want to sign up for salsa dancing classes. Maybe you'll want to sit down with pen and paper and list your goals for your life and concrete steps you can take now to achieve them.
Your own future should be an exciting place that's entirely within the realm of possibility and compatible with what your partner has told you he wants in his life.
Although you can be as specific as you like with your future, avoid planning out his future or both of your futures. If you make plans for the both of you too far in advance, he may feel pressured into a commitment that he's not ready for. Even worse, if you talk about how important it is that he study for that high-paying position to finance your dream home, or where you want to send your unborn children to school, you may scare him off before your hopes have a chance to come true.
Instead, keep any plans for the two of you in the immediate future (such as next week), or allow your imagination free rein to paint a picture of a future that's clearly a dream rather than an expectation.
When your man has the chance to speak his love, knowing that the woman he loves today will still be the same woman ten years after they've married, confident that your futures are going in the same direction, then you may very well discover the softer, mushier, romantic side of your man that he's been trying to keep from the world.
All the best in life and love!