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?) :)