Every time a male friend is about to enter a committed relationship or get married I sit him down and tell him he’s about to hear some sage advice and that he better pay attention. Of course it’s presumptuous of me to think of myself as being sage but it perks their ears, so it’s an effective intro. And though I myself may not be sage in my totality I do have the following sage wisdom because life itself placed me in a few situations where I could observe and learn this – a great vantage point with a wisdom-giving view.
You must know before you take the plunge that to have a woman is, in essence, to have a dragon.
Dragons are the greatest of all beasts fictional and nonfictional, the best ally to have on your side, protector of you and your bounty, and defeater of your enemies. But if you do not keep her well, if you do not feed her she will go hungry and will devour you.
By “feed her” I mean things other than the food your stomach digests (although that doesn’t hurt) and by “devour you” I mean…well, you’ll see.
There are three things that your dragon needs to be given (fed): friendship, loyalty, and sex.
Friendship gives us companionship as well as attention. Two things that most humans need. Conversation, sharing funny stories with each other, gossiping, making fun of the weird neighbors next door, etc. This all might sound obvious to you but when you think about it you’ll probably remember a few couples like this. Like, for example, the American man who marries an immigrant who can barely speak English. Or the couple that stayed together for over 20 years after the marriage was emotionally over and barely have any desire to “hang out” and be friends with each other.
Loyalty is another one that might make you think “well yes, obviously!” But it’s not obvious to a lot of men. And I’m not talking about not cheating on your spouse. That one is obvious. The loyalty I’m talking about is the loyalty of being on your woman’s side. If she’s venting to you about that horrid bitch at work, don’t be obnoxiously calm and say “evolved” (dismissive) things like “you can’t change people” or “everyone is selfish”. Agree with her. Show her you’re also hocked off. Because when the times comes that you’re angry at someone that’s upset you you’re not gonna use that same evolved b.s. on yourself. You’re also gonna be angry, and you’re gonna want her to validate your anger too. Because that’s human.
Sometimes there will be situations, especially if you’re married, where you’re really going to have to show your loyalty and it will be inconvenient. You might have to really show you’re on her side – in front of other people – and defend her, and back up what she says. It might have to do with that horrible coworker or it might have to do with a difficult family member at a holiday gathering. Whatever it is, you have to show you’re on her side. Only when you show others you’re on her side is when she will know that you truly are on her side. If you’re not going to do this, whether it’s because you say she’s a big girl and she can handle it herself or if it’s because you think she needs to handle it herself so that she can become a big girl, is irrelevant. Granted, there are some people who get into a lot of conflicts in their lives, and you truly cannot align with them every single time. But in that specific case there’s underlying issues with the person, like maybe a borderline personality. But in most cases these inconvenient tests of your loyalty will definitely come up in the span of a marriage, not all the time, but definitely several times.
If you don’t want to get involved or you think it’s none of your business then you had no business getting married in the first place. Marriage is all about getting involved with the other. You are both equally the sidekick to each other’s superhero. You support each other, you go out of your way for each other, things get sticky, they get inconvenient, but the reward is an ever-deepening bond. When you don’t show your loyalty when she needs it in these situations things will go downhill at a very steep decline – very quickly, and hard to recover from. Not showing loyalty will make a woman feel stranded and alone in her marriage. This is when the seeds of resentment are sown.
Let’s talk about sex, baby! I think a lot of us already know that women like sex just as much as men do. However, we might not realize all of the delicate things surrounding sex and being a woman. Sex is more psychological for women than it is for men; for men it’s more physical. Although this isn’t the case all the time, women usually tend to need to feel a few things in order to be able to be sexual, things such as safety, connection, and emotion. This might possibly be why making us laugh is almost an immediate precursor to the love-making green light, because when you’ve made us laugh many times in a row all those other psychological prerequisites have already been or will soon be met.
So if sex is more psychological for women, what happens when they go without? Does it mean they become sad? Usually in the short term they are more frustrated and agitated, but in the long run there are deeper feelings of rejection and neglect.
As I mentioned in the beginning, if you don’t feed your dragon all three things she will devour you. She transforms into someone you never knew before, definitely not the person you married. She becomes spiteful, manipulative, naggy, and after many years – constantly and terrifyingly enraged. When women have become constantly enraged its their displaced anger from not being “allowed” to express their anger at the three offenders because on paper they’re not something one “should” be angry about. In your mind: “Yeah I didn’t have sex with my wife that much, but I didn’t cheat on her either.” “Yeah I didn’t stick up for her, because I didn’t think it was any of my business or I didn’t want to make it worse, and I may not have stuck up for her but at least I never badmouthed her.” And “So what I’m not buddy-buddy with her or I don’t feel like talking when I come home from work, at least I’m coming home every night and not out doing God-knows-what.” Well, buddy, all these things you think are non-things are slowly turning her against you, especially because they’re supposedly “not so bad” which causes her to not feel justified vocalizing her frustrations about them. But as long as they’re staying inside they’re also slowly turning her into that fire-breathing dragon that’s going to eventually devour you.
Some men have witnessed the negative, man-devouring dragon at a young age, maybe as their mother or in the wives of their friends, and have sworn off of all relationships. They have the misconception that all women are this way without knowing the truth that it was the specific men of those women they witnessed who did not know how to care for them, which caused them to transform into that.
I hope you, dear reader, do not take offense to my describing women as dragons who must be “kept” and “cared for” correctly. I myself am a woman, and I think women are beautifully wild and mysterious. The moon rules their cycle as though it is the ocean itself that is inside them. Wild is wonderful, and it gives life.
I think it is the other relationship books that bookstores and the Internet are overflowing with that are the true assault on women. The ones that say that happy relationships are the responsibility of the woman. That women need to stop making demands on their husbands. That, if they need something from him to ask him calmly and nicely. Suggestions from the 1950’s written in books after 2000. And why? It’s all driven by the market, of course. Men don’t read books about relationships, women do. So books have to be written telling women what they’re doing wrong and gives them the author’s “fail proof” suggestions on how to fix themselves. Also, women are more likely to think they’re the ones doing something wrong that needs to be fixed than men. Thus, a genre is born.
One such writer, who has misrepresented herself as feminist and speaks in a New Age sort of way and uses a lot of “evolved” type language is my “favorite” of such authors. She pretends at first that she’s about to give you tough love, then proceeds to give the same old anti-feminist, woman-bashing drivel about how you have problems in relationships because you’re selfish and immature. When I first read a very popular article of hers I wanted to give her a paragraph by paragraph rebuttal but ultimately decided against it. She, as well as many other women have profited from making women feel horrible about themselves.
It might be unfair to go about the problem of unhappy relationships and marriages in a one-sided way, but I’m doing this to try and bring some balance to this arena. An arena that has been tilted so unfairly against women for so long. This is my contribution in telling men – hey, you have a responsibility too. It’s not all us “crazy women”.
Marriage sounds like a lot of hard work, doesn’t it? Yes it is. But, it also makes it a lot easier when you marry someone you truly love. When you do, you don’t need a single book or blog post or article. You don’t have to put any effort into following any tips or guidelines , such as in this humble post. It all just happens on its own. And how do you know you truly love someone so that all of this can happen? Simple. You know you love someone when you want to make their life easier. Only then should you marry them. And of course, that should be a mutual desire.
By Rita Lazar
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