In the last two articles Common Problems Men Face With Women and Common Problems Men Face With Women Part 2 we explored a few of the most common problems men face with women and some general ways to deal with them. Now, let’s look at some tools you’ll need along the way.
Why Men Have These Problems #1 – Communication
“Common” thought says that men don’t communicate as well as women. I don’t agree. Men just communicate differently than women. A study was released recently that examined the parts of the brain that people use to communicate. Without going into all of the specifics, it found that men use only half the brain area to communicate than women use. The immediate assumption is that men are only half as capable at communication. However, the researcher said that no, this may very well mean that men only need to use ½ the area needed by women!
Our species has been on this planet for about 1.6 million years. That’s a long time to evolve. For a very, very large portion of that time, we’ve lived in tribal communities. Imagine men in these communities going out on a hunt. When someone saw a tasty-looking animal, he couldn’t just yell out, “Hey Bob – over here!” So, men developed much more intuitive, non-verbal ways of communicating. It seems that men are actually highly evolved communicators but we don’t rely solely on verbal skills.
When men have problems with women, the first thing women want to do is “talk them out.” Verbal skills are well developed in women so they naturally tend to want to use them. They often want us to get into verbal battles with them and for the most part we aren’t as prepared as they are. So, what do we do? In an attempt to handle the situation, we either over-commit, or we lie – all in an attempt to get out of the communication hole we’ve dug. And, women are notoriously good at giving us these opportunities.
Why Men Have These Problems #2 – “The Test”
Women are fully aware of men’s problems with communication. Think not? Read any women’s magazine – they’re chock-full of information about this! This understanding leads to a little event I call “The Test.” The test is a situation (often manufactured) that puts the relationship, and more directly, YOU in a position where you have to act. Not acting (or acting incorrectly) will lead to humiliation, loss of affection or intimacy, looking bad in front of your friends, family, co-workers, etc., or even loss of the relationship!
The test has become so prevalent in our society that it almost always goes unnoticed for what it is. Next time you’re watching a movie or a TV sitcom and you see a male character running around “assholes and elbows” trying to handle something created by his love-interest, you’re probably seeing a test!
Why would women actually create relationship problems? This seems ridiculous to most men. After all, how would you feel if one of your buddies tried to create problems between you two to see how you’d handle it? You’d just laugh at him! Women, on the other hand, have learned to test their men because women want to be with men that are able to pass tests!
Men don’t often admit it, but they know that women control many aspects of the relationship. For example, they decide when you’ll first have sex. They’ll also decide IF you’ll have sex! Men are ready to jump on just about anything. Women have evolved to be more discerning. Thus, along with basic physical, emotional and financial characteristics you must meet, to be truly successful, you must also be able to pass women’s tests.
What Are Tests?
Tests are not problems for you to solve, although they seem that way at first. In fact, to pass a test, you shouldn’t try to solve anything. Tests are about how you react, not about your reaction! Men often react to tests by getting mad, confused, or just giving in. If you do any of these, you’ll either get more tests, or she’ll view you as a loser. Either way, you’ll have failed her test.
Women want men they can look up to and rely on. If you have a good self-esteem and present a strong, confidant “male” image, you’re well along the way to passing her tests. In fact, this is really what the test is all about. It’s about proving you’re the man she hopes you are!
Men are confused about what women want today. I constantly hear men asking things like, “Should I be sensitive?”, “Should I be emotional?”, “Is it ok to cry?” As well, I hear women screaming that they want their men to be men. It’s no wonder that men are confused.
Rules For Handling Tests
As we’ve already seen in the last two parts, there are many problems men can have with women (ok – to be fair, there are many problems women can have with men too!). They take on so many forms that it’s impossible to discuss every one of them. In my books, “Being a Man in a Woman’s World I, II and III,” I cover many of the more common problems, but here is a guide you can use that covers most of them:
Recognize Your Strengths And Weaknesses
Why is she dating you, or married to you? There must be something that she finds appealing. These are probably your masculine traits. If you’re not sure, why not ask her? Focus on your strengths (in her eyes) and always fall back on them when you’re in a bind.
Decide, Up Front, What You Want From Your Relationships
And resolve absolutely that you will not accept anything else! This is a powerful stance and greatly eases the burden of tests and any other general craziness! Remember, you have the right to expect basic courtesy, consideration and respect from your lover, (as does she from you). Deciding not to tolerate a lack of any of these things is critical.
Pay Attention To Things!
Many problems arise from not being aware of what’s going on with her. Of course, you can’t keep track of her every mood-swing, but you can establish a pattern. This will be very useful later!
Have A Plan
Many tests come when we aren’t ready for them. For example, you’re just getting ready to walk into the theatre and she asks, “Where’s our relationship going?”. You know damn well (as does she!) that you can’t address this properly in the short time from the line to your seats. She is hoping to get you to commit beyond your current willingness to do so. What do you do? Have a plan!
Be ready for these types of assaults and tell her, “Honey, we can’t possibly deal with this now. We’ll talk about it later.” Then, you actually have to be ready to handle it – don’t let it slide, or you’ll be in for more problems. Take some time to actually decide what you want. Then, bring it up before she gets the next chance. This way, not only is she not prepared, but you’ve thought it out and actually have an answer!
Through talking to many, many readers, I have found that women tend to be ready move the relationship forward sooner than men (commitment, monogamy, moving in together, marriage, children, etc.) If you’re not ready for this, be prepared with something like, “Honey, if you want to get married right now, I’m sure you can find someone that will marry you. On the other hand, if you want to be with someone of value like me, you’re going to have to wait awhile. The choice is yours.” She’ll get the picture.
By the way, this also works for women being pressured by men!
Understand, Recognize And Be Prepared For The Test
When a situation arises where you feel confused, angry, or “off-balance,” ask yourself if this behavior is normal for her. If she’s a little nutty, she may just be having an “episode.” On the other hand, she may be trying to test you. The first step is recognizing and discerning the event for what it is.
You’ve already decided that you won’t accept disrespect or discourtesy. Next, decide that you’ll remain calm. Take a moment to think through the situation and find the most powerful position you can take at that moment without having to concede to her game. Then, take it!
No Violence Under Any Circumstance!
There is no excuse whatsoever for violence on your part, or on hers. Decide right now, that you’ll neither inflict, nor accept violence in any form – emotional or physical. Period. Violence is a loud signal of a severe emotional problem. If either of you are violent, seek immediate, professional help. No excuses.
Don’t Get Angry!
Getting angry causes you to be off-balance. This is difficult enough a situation without being able to respond appropriately. Remain calm, think through the situation and deal with it from a point of strength.
Remember, many tests are designed to get you angry. For example, you’re watching the game with your buddies and she shows up unexpectedly, when she clearly wasn’t invited. When you send her away, she’s going to get angry and try to provoke you into anger. Don’t worry – this is part of the test! She’ll probably also ask your friends to “vote” on her staying. Stop this and calmly tell her, “no, I won’t put my friends in the middle of this, and neither will you.” Then, ask her to leave and tell her you’ll talk about it later. She’ll find new respect for you calmly dealing with it (and so will your friends).
Put The Issue Back In Her Lap
Make her next move the deciding one. If you’re not willing to play, she’ll have to go it alone. Further, she’ll have to find more appropriate ways of dealing with you and your relationship.
Is All This Worth It?
Yes, absolutely it is, but it ultimately it depends on your goals. If you want deep, loving, and committed relationships with women, you’re going to have to understand how they think and act. If your goal is just to bang it out with a new woman every week, you probably aren’t going to need these skills. The choice is yours.
Some women resent hearing about the test. However, many, many more have written me to say that they agree with my interpretation. Why would they do this? Because first, they know that this goes on, but second, they recognize that strong, involved men make better partners!
Remember, as with handling most relationship problems, planning, being calm, and thinking things through rather than just reacting will help get you through it with your skin intact. Further, if done right, you shouldn’t have to pass any more tests!
Have a love, dating, sex or relationship question? You can write to me or get more information about “Being a Man in a Woman’s World tm” by going to: http://BeingAMan.com. Follow me on Facebook (http://tinyurl.com/cas4w9) and Twitter (http://tinyurl.com/d3pecs).
Copyright (c) 2013, Dr. Dennis W. Neder
All rights reserved.