Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Soft Soft Soft

Want him to be more of a man? Try being more of a woman.
~Coty Perfume Ad

I've had a few experiences recently that have troubled me. I've been witnessing a lot of women telling their men what to do. At parties, on the subway, and even in public on the street. And not in a "Hey this is what I need and what do you need from me, honey?" sort of way but in a "This is HOW you do it, if you want to do it RIGHT" sort of way. It's brutal. And I find it emasculating. It's as though these woman are their man's mother; not their partner.

Last week walking down the street I asked a couple who were pushing a carriage for directions to a restaurant. I happened to direct the question to the guy. He started to tell me how to get there, when his wife interrupted him to tell me the "better" way to go. I looked at her thinking; "Are you serious?" But she didn't notice. Then I looked at him and saw a look on his face of resignation and apathy. Clearly he had been through this before and wasn't surprised by her interruption.

Now I realize this isn't every woman out there. And I also know that there are men that do this very thing to their women. But I've been surprised at how many women seem to be doing this to their men. I believe this is due to what is known as the "Wonder Woman" syndrome. I first learned about this from author Laura Doyle years ago. She wrote an amazing book (which I featured in my first blog posting) called The Surrendered Wife.

Women are incredibly capable. We keep so many balls up in the air at once. We are always juggling and are so good at it, that sometimes we ride rough-shod over our man because we are so busy being busy and doing it all. We start to act as if it ALL depends on us. And sometimes it feels like it does. But in actuality, it doesn't. But living as though it does - we create a very lonely world to live in as well as a world where we do all the work.

When you think that your way is the right way - or the only way, who wants to come up to bat when it's guaranteed that their contribution will be shot down. Ask yourself - and be honest - is it possible that you are blocking the very contribution you seek? Have you pushed help away because it didn't show up in exactly the way you wanted it to show up?

How about compliments? Do you receive them? The last time your man offered you a gift did you gracefully receive it? Or tell him he couldn't afford it? When he offered to help you with a errand or task, did you tell them him e-x-a-c-t-l-y how he should do it? When he complimented your hair, dress or figure? Did you respond that it really wasn't all that? These are some examples of not receiving. Try stepping into receiving and gratitude. Take it all in -as it is given - and enjoy it without critiquing it or him. Don't control it - just let it arrive and softly land.

So what comes first the chicken or the egg? What if you are walking around with the belief "It all depends on me!" You know the saying about self-fufilling prophecies, don't you? Perhaps if you let it go and surrender - he will organically start to do what he needs to do and I wouldn't be surprised possibly even more.

Nobody likes to be bossed around. Everyone resists it. Nobody likes to be told how to live; not to mention how to clean the dishes. Stop trying to fix and make everything perfect around you. If your man won't do something then let it not get done. You don't have to fix it.

Let those socks sit in the living room. Let the chips fall where they may. Eventually it will need to get addressed and who says it has to be you? Do you really want to go down in the history books as the Town Crier of the family? You already know darn well that nagging doesn't make it happen.

If you let things go - here is what you will discover: More time for yourself. More baths. More relaxation. Less worry and stress. And more love. You will start to see change. It might not show up immediately but it will come. If you surrender; and let go it will come. Alliance is the opposite of dictatorship. Align with your man and reap the rewards. And if you find that receiving is actually too difficult to do on your own then consider bringing on a coach to help you access it.

Some Do's

  • Do let your man play, change the diaper, feed, talk, be with, the children his way. He isn't ever going to show up with the kids the way you do - nor should he. He has his way of showing up. Let him be himself.

  • Let the guy drive when he is driving. No short-cut advice. No, "we should have taken that highway" recap. Let it go. Relax. Get to the party 15 minutes late. It isn't worth the price of telling your man that you don't trust him to get you there all on his own.

  • When your man shares with you his distress or confusion regarding a choice he must make at either the office or with his friends, resist the urge to solve it, instead tell him you trust his judgment and will support him in his decision. And then do so.

  • Read the Surrendered Wife by Laura Doyle and learn what it is like to surrender and receive all that you are saying you really want!
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