Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Male Psyche (& heart)

Before I move on with the survey results with the 25,000 men and what they had to say about physical intimacy, I want to linger a moment on the emotional intimacy topic.

Christian writer Shaunti Feldhahn did some research of her own. She interviewed 1,000 men to find out what they wished their wives knew. Check out three of her findings:

1) Men would rather feel unloved than inadequate or disrespected. Husbands need to know that their wives respect them both privately and publicly. Men thrive when they know that their wives admire them, trust them and believe in them. In fact, most men would rather sense the loss of loving feelings from their wives than to be disrespected by them according to this research. Note, this can't be empty flattery but must be honest respect - find something you can genuinely praise and thank him for.

2) A man's anger is often a response to feeling disrespected by his wife. When a husband becomes angry with his wife, he may not come out and say, "You're disrespecting me and that upsets me!" But, there is a good chance he is feeling stung by something his wife has said or done which he considers humiliating. Gals, this is frequently the source of those marital spats that seem to us to "come out of nowhere." His "disrespected meter" can be so sensitive that we frequently have no idea we are tripping it with what we say.

Notice I used the words "often" and "feeling" in this one. I'm not looking to make us feel guilty, or to blame his anger issues on us. However, the Bible does tell us specifically to respect our husbands - clearly God knows this is big for men.

3) Men are more insecure than they let on. Men can fear they aren't cutting it in life ... as a man, a provider, a husband, a lover, a father, a leader, a Christian, etc. Again, they may never vocalize this, but they feel it and revealed it in this research. The antidote to their insecurity? Plugging into God, of course. But also, affirmation from you - which makes them feel secure and confident in all areas of their life. When men don't receive affirmation from their wives, they will often seek it elsewhere, or become vulnerable to the affirmation other women may offer them.

Again, I said "often." Please realize these are factually-based generalizations that are helpful to know, but cannot be applied or used to explain every case. Nonetheless, it is great food for thought - and action - for us wives.

You can find more in Feldhahn's book For Women Only: What You Need to Know About the Inner Lives of Men. Also, other good resources have been mentioned in the comments of the Why Mean Cheat post below, so check that out if you haven't.
Hang on, girls, the discussion of physical intimacy is coming.
(um ... how did I get myself into this?) :)


  1. AnonymousJune 03, 2009

    i think we've had some of those out of nowhere fights you mentioned. But if i don't know that I'm tripping his meter, anyone know how do I keep from doing it?

  2. For any curious women, the book that Rachel mentioned in her post is fabulous! I read it before getting married and 'probed' my husbands mind. It was AMAZING to see what I was missing and not doing to make him feel like the wonderful man I knew he was.

    I'd like to also share that recently our church had a revival team host services and meetings for two weeks...a lot of it was about personal revival in Christ but also focused on revival of the family. The gentleman, Wilson, who most often spoke about families challenged women one night to go home and ask their husbands one question: "What can I do to be a more submissive wife?"

    I challenge every woman to bring that question to their husband. It's amazing how we occasionally do simple things in our minds that severely impact the minds of our husbands and turn them away from us!

    How good God is and how good it is to have Him in our lives! May His peace be with all of you!

  3. Wow.....this hits close to my home right now. I really found this helpful and this book sounds awesome. Think I'll take a little trip over to! ;)


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