Honey, Please Stand in My Shoes

How Different Traits Work for a Perfect Marriage

When you suddenly find your wife talking about the future of your relationship at 2:00 am, while she should be normally sleeping, don’t question her sanity but just remember how men and women differ when it comes to emotions.

Many marital problems and misunderstandings stem from the fact that men and women generally feel and react to the same situation in different ways. However, most spouses either don’t know or deny this fact.

Presenting men and women as creatures from different planets in “Men from Mars, Women from Venus” book was shocking to many people. Yet, it is an interesting approach to look at human differences as pieces of puzzle that if correctly placed, they will form the perfect picture.

How men and women differ in their emotions? And how can we make use of these differences for our quest of perfection?

Here are some facts that women should know about men:

  • Success and accomplishment are what satisfies a man rather than sharing.
  • Men are mostly practical; they are very unlikely to repeat what they want to say in different ways like women commonly do. This is because for men talking is a tool, while for women, it’s a goal!

A group of male friends would rather focus on activities, while their female counterparts would give more time to talk and discuss their personal lives and secrets.

  • Men like to feel respected and trusted.
  • They understand and respond to direct messages;wives shouldn’t expect their husbands to understand them if they just drop a hint.
  • They don’t like instructions,you can help them improve, by focusing on their good sides while neglecting faults, but don’t ever try to change them.
  • Men want to fix things.
  • Men are not  good listeners;they will easily get bored from a two pages talk that can be summarized in two sentences.
  • When they are  stressed or have a problem,they prefer withdrawal rather than talking. Give your husband a break until he’s back.
  • Men will probably have no problem in expressing their rage rather than their depression or weakness, which is well perceived and even admired by the community.
  • Contrary to what many people believe,men also need to feel loved, but not by the repetition of the word. They’d be delighted when flirted, or when they find a love message on their mobile phones.
  • They do tangible things to deliver their message of love and care rather than expressing their feelings to their wives.
  • Men tend to risk more than women do.Keeping this in mind, don’t expect any man to act as a woman even if he tries.

As For Women…

Now, it is women’s turn, and these are some facts men should know about women:
  • Women like sharing; she likes her husband to share his thoughts, dreams, and fears with her.
  • Women use more emotional language and share emotions more frequently.
  • Women tend to understand others’ emotions and pains and show sympathy.

Showing their emotions doesn’t make women more emotional than men, it is just how they act and expect others to react.

  • Women are not difficult to satisfy; on the contrary, they just need to feel loved and cared for by unexpected kiss, nice compliment. Women like to feel valued and appreciated by words or by simple gifts.
In many cases, the answer to a woman’s rage is simply a hug!
  • Women like to be shown affection; she would be happy to receive calls from her husband while at work, just for telling her, ‘I love you’ or ‘I miss you’.
Even when the husband decides to withdraw and think independently, she’d appreciate it if he tells her that he needs a break and will talk with her later rather than just withdraw.
  • Most women tend to choose security rather than adventure, especially after having children whom they feel responsible for.
  • Conversation: women need to talk with their husbands while they are fully alert and expect them to show sympathy and concentration with what they say.
  • Multitasking is mostly a female trait that is built in or acquired by practice, while men like to focus on one topic at a time.
  • Women understand things and hints between lines, men’s job here is not easy; they need to pay attention to what they say, lest it carries different meanings, one of them is bad.

Standing in the Other’s Shoes

Being different doesn’t mean being wrong or right; it’s rather the way each spouse processes; both of them need acceptance from the other partner.

Acceptance doesn’t only involve respecting the other’s nature, but also acknowledging the efforts to efficiently accomplish his/her role within the family.

Next step is to acknowledge personal variations, and see how your spouse would like you to act in a particular situation, even if it looks illogic or doesn’t make sense to you.

For example, some men feel superior when they are working while their wives are staying at home, taking care of the house and raising the kids. In this case, the man would think this way: I work hard to afford life expenses, and my wife is just doing trivial duties and playing with the kids!

While the wife may think in another way: Oh, he works for only one job and reports to one manager, does a definite job, with more or less definite working hours, he gets raises as well as vacations, he is appreciated when he excels in his job, this is like heavens! But for me, I’m working almost 24 hours, every day brings me more duties and less appreciation, I should keep my temper and watch my language all the time, I don’t have the opportunity to go out and talk with grownups like my husband does.

In this case each spouse thinks  through his/her own lens, in turn  the distance between them will keep increasing with no hope of meeting at a midpoint.

It might look like a joke, but what if they change roles only for one day?, where the husband stays at home doing house chores and taking care of the kids, while his wife goes out for a whole working day.

No doubt, this will give each of them a very good insight of unseen loads and hardships experienced on daily basis, and efforts done to accomplish the tasks successfully.

When you feel you are a part of something bigger, an entity that you and your partner work together to build and flourish, this can be  a highly motivating atmosphere where everyone is more likely to be achieving than working on his/her own.

Always remember that diversity comes with richness, having different natures, abilities, and emotional makeup is a true gift.

Being different stands as  good lens from which we can see how we were created dependent on one another; so we can be always together!

First published: May 2013