Category Archives: Dear daughter

2039. Old School Movie: The Moon is Blue


Attention, Ladies,

I was recently captivated by an old school movie I’d never seen. The producer must have caught the censors napping. It’s much unlike other flicks from 1953. Not dirty but virginity is discussed, and it seems mild by today’s standards.

Darling of a fictional heroine, never-famous Maggie McNamara is given a superlative role and plays it beautifully. Heavyweight casting against her. She’s up against William Holden and David Niven in The Moon is Blue.

Her directness works very well in the movie; it’s entertaining. But in real life, I don’t think women could get by with it. I don’t suggest her character as role model, but recommend the movie just to enjoy an unusual story told very well about a different kind of woman.

I couldn’t find it on Netflix but didn’t look elsewhere.

Guy

 

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2035. Coffee and Tea with Mrs. G. #38


She’s been with the Lord for six months, but this story Grace would have told if we had recalled it. About the turn of the century, she and I visited a favorite chain restaurant. We had recently become acquaintances of the owner/operator. He’s working the day shift as shift manager.

We’re sitting in an end booth, he leans over the end and chats with us, obviously doing so in passing rather than visiting. We subsequently learn he’s professionally charming and loaded with integrity. With those talents he’s also an excellent leader and has gone on to higher position in his company. He just treated me to lunch yesterday, and it reminded me of this story.

Anyway, back to the booth. The three of us are laughing and enjoying something. Suddenly a good looking, ultra well-dressed woman unknown to us appeared at his side. She was already deep into throwing a hissy fit. Her red face spewed these words that reflect her anger better than I remember the accuracy. “You knew I was coming. I’ve been here (??) minutes. You should have been at my table already. You need to tell the servers what to do. You’ve been moving about and purposely ignoring me. You’ve embarrassed me before my friend (lunch partner).” The tirade probably continued for double the time it takes to say what I just wrote. She made no effort to keep her voice down.

So embarrassed his teeth turn red, he remained well composed. With gritted teeth he gently told her to return to her table and he would be there shortly. He waited until she got there and excused himself with our blessing and sympathy. I thought how can he be so calm?

After he departs, Grace turns to me and says, “That marriage won’t last.” And, of course it doesn’t except for a few legal-processing months. I wish I could have witnessed their ‘togetherness’ after he got home from work.

Ladies, don’t visit expecting husband to forsake his duty to cater to your whims. Leave all your whims at home. Pick up your patience umbrella and wear your gratefulness hat. You’re special but your presence magnifies his concerns, whether he acts like it or not. Everything becomes more important except what he can dispense with for the moments he spends with you. His decision and not yours.

The moral: There is no end to the benefits that wife’s patience and understanding bring to hubby’s job site. With it she makes him look good. By showing ultra respect for him and gratefulness for his associates/employees, she makes him look great.

 

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2026. Likeability — Part II


Better than love, I like another term that makes both sexes more comfortable in marital problem solving—likeability. Keeping a constant but mostly silent watch on mutual likeability enables women to more easily detect and retune disharmony before major problems erupt. And so, I aim this short series at relationship experts who hope to improve their techniques.

As the gauge of marital compatibility, women usually use ‘love’ with all its variances and connections. They start thinking he doesn’t love me anymore or similar thoughts with accusations often included. It focuses her thinking on blaming him without provoking any self-talk about her involvement, as if she’s either innocent or free of blame. It’s a natural response; she never intended to do anything that would cause his unlikeable behavior, disruptive attitude, lessened interest, or weaker love. However, blame immediately diverts both their attentions away from minor and toward bigger and more blame-worthy issues and accusations.

Each spouse’s likeability determines the extent to which the other wants to be in their presence, enjoy their company, live together permanently. It’s the magnet of friendliness, kindness, and companionship. The enjoyment of just being around the other. Wives have to sacrifice much of it after marriage. Natural motivational forces energize husbands to forego much of the intimate togetherness that wives wish or crave.

Her likeability is built on the foundation of who she was when he waited at the altar. Courtship taught him the meaning of her presence in his life. As she grows (or wilts) out of that persona, her likeability declines. His respect and love of her may go up, but it does not follow that her likeability will also. Respect and love have different roots; her likeability is rooted in their courtship and the promise he perceived in her as his supporter and junior partner for his workaday life.

Her man’s likeability is rooted in her dreams of how she will shape their married life. Her dreams, however, don’t include a full understanding of his nature. His marital responsibility, job obligation, ambition, and primal urge to accomplish things push him to yield the enjoyment of her presence in favor of his many missions in life. When he falls from grace as part of her dreams, his likeability declines.

I propose a new set of thoughts to overcome her natural but unproductive response dealing with it as a love issue. Constantly but quietly weigh their relationship in terms of self, matching, and mutual likeability. Keep tabs on it for him, her, and us. Don’t constantly focus on the big things for which she naturally worries such as love, finances, or sex. Become more aware of the little things that rattle their cage of reciprocal likeability.

For example, she’s teed off at his laziness because her honey-do list grows longer. How does her reaction to that conclusion make her appear likeable or unlikeable to him? Would she have reacted that way during courtship? She can read his reaction to however she expresses her dissatisfaction. In his view, do her words and attitude make her more or less likeable? Given her mood, does he enjoy her presence?

I believe that signs of one liking the other are better indicators both of love and of disturbances in their relationship. Discrepancies are easier to see, harder to defend, and less accusatory when kept at a simpler level than the complexities of understanding mutual love. Moreover, it encourages relationship experts to take advantage of this fundamental principle of life: One is never wrong who takes the blame so that others avoid it.

For example: She turns careless and sloppy about her appearance soon after marriage. Or, her cooking turns from prepared at home to carry-out. Or, she insults him in front of others. Or she fails on her promises. He expects her not to change from whom he married but she does, so he’s not at fault. He takes offense—silently. He has no relationship management skills. Unsure of what to do, he weighs the expected consequences and finds her less likeable. However, she reads the silence in him and is enabled to inquire as if she is to blame, which is the tactic that causes him to open up. She can open discussion by asking questions that harbor no blame. Presuming to take the blame for whatever has happened, she learns what’s bothering him. Out of that, she can figure out what she wants to do about it.

For example: He starts working longer hours when it appears unnecessary from her view. Or, he flirts with other women in front of her. Or, he quit taking care of and keeping her car washed. Before she accuses him of something concocted in her imagination—he doesn’t love her anymore or he’s having an affair—she presumes that she’s less likeable for some reason. And so she inquires. Honey, have I been pleasing you enough lately? Are you displeased with me? Do I provide what you need when you need it? How can I do more for you? Fix meals more closely aligned with your schedule? Greet you after work in my nightie? Fix your breakfast before I go to church? Keep the kids quieter while you study? Let you sleep longer on the weekends? Take aspirin before bedtime?

When romantic or enduring love starts to fade in the eyes of either spouse, suspicions arise, faultfinding emerges, and mutual appreciation becomes un-mutual. Potholes appear in his road to marital satisfaction. Her road to happiness narrows, needs repairs, and the detours re-route her. On the other hand, likeability is far less volatile as subject of discussion and therefore less disruptive and more easily addressed without blame attached.

Battling over whether one’s love is sufficient for the other induces just blame and excuses. Operating as if likeability is the primary glue reduces problems instead of growing them. Small problems are more easily resolved peaceably. Relationship harmony is more easily maintained.

——

NOTE: Ladies, this is a new subject that I have been working on for some time. I’m confident about the concept and process but less so about the clarity and completeness of the series. You can help me present more or a better view by questioning/challenging specific points to which I can rebut and elaborate. IOW do what you do best and works best for me. Thanks for the help or even thoughtful consideration. Guy

 

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2025. Likeability — Part I


The point has been made before. The accumulation of negative irritants and minor offenses can dissolve a relationship bit by bit and do it more easily than original reasons for mating can hold a couple together. Major negative influences easily lead to terminal disruption, such as these.

  • Everyday carelessness in her appearance weakens his desire to look upon her as worthy of his investment. Men hate to be reminded that they may or in fact did err, and their imagination magnifies whatever mistake they do nothing about.
  • Emotional outbursts weaken respect. Hers have the most damaging effect because his love is based on respect for her. Her respect of him is not as vital but still accumulates with all the other little things about him that turn her off.
  • Emotional infidelity weakens his desirability, because women refuse to play second fiddle in their man’s life. He’s not nearly as sensitive to her emotional infidelity, but her physical unfaithfulness outweighs all reason for keeping her.
  • Nagging weakens her likeability and indolence weakens his.

In fact, likeability is underrated as marital glue and is the subject of Part II tomorrow.

 

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2022. Recovery from Husband’s Wronging Her


This article responds to two ladies’ comments at post 2020.

Pinging off Cinnamon’s initiative, Her Husband’s Wife describes frequent wifely problems in this clear and simple process.

1. Husband trips up and does something wrong.
2. Wife reacts with angry outburst or motherly scolding.
3. Husband either fights or flights from wife. (His behavior worsens).
4. As the husband’s behavior “worsens” the woman tells other women about her husband’s bad behavior.
5. Other women rally on wife’s side against husband and tells wife to not let this go, get in his face, show him who’s boss etc. The wife elevates herself as being better than her husband or remains in “victim” mode to receive sympathy.
6. Husband’s doesn’t respond well to any of this.
7. A wedge is put between husband and wife.

Review that process and note how two threads weave through it. a) Women are processors and tend to keep things going; inequalities must be addressed and resolved. Men are producers and tend to seek final results. Hence, men go into fight or flight mode easily and fake settlement until the process ends their way.

b) Of course he starts the process by doing something wrong, but that too springs from his nature. His conquest before marriage empowers him with conqueror’s right. She is his. He ‘owns’ her and especially their sexual agenda. It gives him some measure of residual independence that he exemplifies from time to time after marriage. I don’t claim it’s right, equal, or even fair. Only that his heart and mind are hardwired that way from birth. Whatever deviation or special adjustment a man makes comes from being taught greater respect for females and originates before puberty. Or, conqueror’s right is severely weakened by her conquering him for marriage before he conquers her for sex. (But then after marriage it’s easier but not certain for her to lose respect for him—but that’s another story.)

——

What’s the solution? Cinnamon advised a friend this way: “…whether he was in the wrong is COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT because men don’t like to be berated and criticized by women, and consider it disrespectful when a woman does this, under any circumstance. I told her that her daughter should have ignored the behavior and been cordial to him when he got home but not overly friendly, to pull back just a little bit in order to signal her displeasure but in a subtle way.” It’s a good start on the process of ending a disruption.

Women, being processors, should be able to work the forthcoming recovery fairly easy as it capitalizes on female strengths inherited at birth, For example, patience, soft-heartedness, hard-headedness, future more important than the present, fear of abandonment, ability to find gratefulness in little things, urge to nest even stronger than urge to love someone, and urge to heal others’ wounds. Plus, women have adaptability and survivability skills that make females the superior sex and enable women to naturally generate balance with male dominance.

Now, imagine this. A woman offended immediately ends the process at step 1 above and invokes a new process by and only within herself. He never hears her take exception to his wronging her. Her ordeal ends for him except as his conscience begins to smolder with guilt and regret, which she should neither expect nor be surprised when it emerges. In her mind, she puts him aside as a participant. She works through it all by herself. Now, this process is written for the severest or repeated wrongs. If an offense is less severe, ease off at appropriate places in the process.

  1. She reminds herself that she’s the relationship expert and he’s an uninterested party only for this process. It’s all up to her and she doesn’t seek advice of girlfriends or family. It’s her ballgame to pitch her way such that husband learns who she is internally rather than what others influence her to become. She aims to settle them into a two-sided mating that depends on no outside influences. (If she must talk to someone, let it be her mirror image, her best friend.)
  2. Her objective: Let him figure out himself what, how, when, where, and even if he wants to please her. When it’s his idea and he repeats pleasing her many times to correct his wrong, it becomes habitual, which makes him uncomfortable at displeasing her. That is what it takes for him to NOT “trip up and do something wrong” in the future.
  3. She keeps to herself disappointment in him. She stops all bossing. She stops all criticizing him as she did previously. In all matters dealing with him, she uses indirectness, seed planting, hints, and other signs that she regards him in a different light. He reads her that he’s respected less and has to earn her favor even in things disconnected from his offense. However, he’s guilty of nothing but his original offense. She never acknowledges or confirms lack of respect of him as her husband, home CEO, dependable provider/protector, or any other role he fills satisfactorily.
  4. She tries to forgive him without ever muttering a word about it to him. Forgiveness is more for her than for him. When she finally does forgive him, she doesn’t tell him until he works his way back into her good graces over an extended period of time.
  5. He knows that he’s disappointed her. As she keeps her thoughts to herself, she earns his respect. It’s not too unlike earning his respect by keeping her legs crossed during dating and courtship.
  6. If he wants to talk, explain himself, or confess, she listens but says nothing except “Okay” or “I accept what you say.” Let him talk his way into expressing regret, asking forgiveness, and making promises as he sees fit and on his own time and opportunity. He’s the home CEO. He’s the leader. Let him lead. Make it his show, let him express his regrets all alone without her offering criticism, condemnation, judgment, or even encouragement. If he doesn’t earn her forgiveness with more than a few words and subsequent actions over an extended time, he will not appreciate her gift of forgiveness. If she forgives easily, he doesn’t appreciate it fully but learns what works the next time he needs to seek it. So, this process of hers should last for many months and perhaps years.
  7. Of course the question comes up about sex. If he didn’t cheat, his offense should have no effect on their sexual behavior. If he did, it’s another question addressed in the blog. On the CONTENT page at blog top, search for “cheat.”

By her invoking that recovery process, she sets him aside to live with his heart and mind to open and accumulate regrets. Without inputs from her about his doing her wrong, his curiosity stirs his imagination and his conscience. Only out of that mix do regrets compound into behavioral changes.

 

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2018. Favored Quotes—Collection 41


These quotes reflect the wisdom of ladies who comment on the blog.

“At times I think “yes I am great catch” then comparison, the thief of joy comes along.” [Reading Up at 1972, emphasis added by Guy.]

“The conversation contained the words ‘stop it’ which I would repeat several times over the next few months. I never raised my voice; in fact I spoke much more softly than usual, as I knew he felt as badly as I felt. Neither of us had wanted this type of interaction. I forgave without needing an apology (although he did give one).” [Lauren about Guy Jr. at 1493]

“See I have been waiting for months for an opportunity to use what you taught us on how to thank men. And I did… it was at work in an email to a colleague who helpful. I typed ‘men are never more handsome than when they help a lady who’s under pressure’! You had to see his reaction. I think I made his day :) It was easier in an email though.” [From Cocoa at 1525]

“I think men love the sparkle in a woman’s eye more than cleavage dumping out the blouse. They love a girl who can work hard and make it look easy, who is full of languor and confidence, and yet humble and energetic. They love it when a woman doesn’t talk too much, but only says things that either need to be said or are wanted to be heard. Men seem to like women who have self-respect because it protects them from having to feel guilty for getting away with disrespecting her, since she won’t put up with it in the first place. Men seem to think it’s fascinating for a woman to defend herself, so long as she doesn’t do it in a way that disrespects his manhood. I think my husband appreciates my talents that help him build up his own self-image, such as my fashion sense in helping him dress, my popularity with his co-workers, and my knowledge of nutrition since he’s in the fitness business. He doesn’t seem to care much about what I wear as long as I’m happy with it, or if I show up to his work events to socialize. I think men want a woman who trusts them even more than they trust themselves. Men want a woman to hold them up to a standard of greatness that is in them, but that they have not yet attained, because their love for her motivates them to reach that standard.” [Maria at 1979]

 

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2002. Grandmother’s Sabotage


I’m unsure how typical this is, but it needs a loud broadcast. A mother’s home can be plagued by her mother’s visits. Sounds impossible, so watch as I report and comment on one wife’s situation. Remember it when you become a grandmother.

EDITOR’S NOTE: I RESPOND IN CAPS TO Her Highness Anon’s comment in lower case WITH PARAGRAPHS BROKEN FOR EASE OF READING.

GUY

——

Sir Guy,

You cite the need of a woman to make herself feel “more important for those to whom she is vital.” I would love your opinion of the scenario I find myself in. I’m a stay-at-home mom to three (ages 4, 2, and newborn). [CONGRATULATIONS]

My mother (who lives close by) [YOU’RE FORTUNATE] visits our family a couple times per week [GREAT!], to spend an hour or so with the grandchildren (my kids). She always shows up with an expensive toy, sugary treat, etc. [FOR THAT AND OTHER REASONS ADDED BELOW, IT'S NOT GREAT BUT UNDESIRABLE. HER MANNER OF GIVING TAKES DIGNITY FROM YOU AS THE MOTHER. IT MAKES BOYS DEPENDENT RATHER THAN INDEPENDENT AND TEACHES DAUGHTERS SOME WRONG THINGS. IT ALSO PUTS YOU AND GRANDMOTHER INTO COMPETITIVE ROLES FOR KIDS’ AFFECTION AND THE KIDS LEARN TO PLAY YOU AGAINST GRANDMOTHER. CHILDREN ARE SELF-DEVELOPERS AND THEY LEARN QUICKLY HOW TO GET THE 'MOSTEST' FROM THE BEST HOSTESS AND EXPECT THE 'LEASTEST' FROM THE NEXT BEST HOSTESS, WHICH ADD IMPORTANCE TO ONE AND SUBTRACTS IMPORTANCE FROM THE OTHER.]

At first I enjoyed seeing my children enjoy her treats. Lately, however, she has begun undermining my authority [UNDERMINING AUTHORITY IS THE WORST THING AN ADULT CAN DO TO A PARENT, THE DAMAGE LASTS FOR LIFE.] and even saying I’m “too strict for the kids to need to obey me” [WHICH IS WORSE THAN INDIRECTLY UNDERMINING AUTHORITY. IT’S A CONDEMNATION OF YOU AS PARENT.] (she says this in front of the children and I know my four-year-old understands what she is saying). [MUCH DAMAGE HAS ALREADY BEEN DONE. HE’S BEEN PROGRAMMED TO BE A DISCIPLINE PROBLEM BECAUSE YOU HAVE BEEN DISCREDITED BY HIGHER AUTHORITY.]

Most recently I was concerned when she told me that “isn’t it funny how kids always hate their moms?! But grandparents! these are the ones that they are supposed to love!!” [IT SHOULD BUT THIS WON’T MAKE YOU FEEL ANY BETTER. SHE’S PROBABLY JEALOUS THAT YOU’RE A DIFFERENT KIND OF MOTHER. YOUR EXAMPLE BRINGS TO MIND HER REGRETS AND GUILT, AND SHE FEELS COMPELLED TO COMPENSATE BY OVERDOING IT WITH YOUR KIDS. IOW, SHE SACRIFICED HERSELF RAISING YOU EVEN THOUGH SHE NOW KNOWS SHE DIDN’T DESERVE YOUR LOVE COMPARED TO HOW YOU DO THE MOM THING.]

I told her I never felt this way about her, and I wondered why she made the remark. [IT’S EXPLAINED JUST ABOVE.] Since then, my kids have begun saying they wish they lived at Grandma’s house & that they love Grandma more than me, their mom. [THAT’S TYPICAL AND EXPECTED FROM GRANDMOTHER’S WELL-INTENTIONED BUT WRONGFUL PROGRAMMING.]

I was hurt by this and my husband told the children they were never to speak that way again. [WHAT A GREAT HUSBAND. YOU MAY HAVE MARRIED OVER YOUR HEAD.]

But I already feel cut down in size by my mom [AND WELL YOU SHOULD FEEL], who seems to want to create a sense of her own importance by making me less-important in my kids’ eyes. [JEALOUSY WORKS THAT WAY.]

Do you think I’m reading too much into my mom’s actions? [YOU’RE READING TOO LITTLE, TAKING TOO LITTLE OFFENSE, SHE’S CONTAMINATING YOUR NEST.

To put it in some perspective, my mom raised two kids, but my brother made a lot of bad choices [RESULT OF LESS THAN OPTIMAL PARENTING] (he’s since settled down) and I did not choose the career path they hoped [ROOM FOR ANGER BEFORE AND JEALOUSY NOW].

(I’m a stay-at-home-mom), so I suppose mom may not feel “fulfilled” by us. She once said she had “only regrets” [SHE CAN’T OR WON’T FORGIVE HERSELF, AND YOUR HOME KEEPS HER ON THAT KNIFE EDGE.] when she looked back on her years of raising kids, which shocks me because I thought I had a pretty good childhood!! [IT WAS GOOD ENOUGH. YOU FELT FREE ENOUGH THAT SELF-DEVELOPMENT LED YOU TO BE A SUCCESSFUL WIFE AND MOTHER. BUT YOU DID IT CONTRARY TO PARENTAL EXPECTATIONS THAT NOW GENERATE REMINDERS OF HER GUILT, REGRET, AND JEALOUSY. SHE LACKED CONTROL OVER YOUR LIFE THAT SHE EXPECTED TO HAVE. HER CAREER OUTSIDE THE HOME SHAPED HER THINKING THAT WAY.]

WITH NATURAL AND NORMAL OBLIGATIONS OF DAUGHTER TO MOTHER, YOUR HANDS ARE EFFECTIVELY TIED. YOUR HUSBAND MIGHT REACH HER. GRANDPA MIGHT TOO. BUT BOTH ARE UNLIKELY TO CONVERT HER LOYALTY TO HERSELF INTO TRUE GRANDMOTHERLY LOYALTY. THE KIND THAT MORPHS GOOD WOMEN INTO MATRIARCHS.

THE ROOT OF RECOVERY WILL START TO GROW WHEN YOUR MOTHER FORGIVES HERSELF FOR HER OWN PARENTING RECORD, FORGIVES HERSELF FOR TRESPASSING YOUR HOME’S SPIRIT, AND FORGIVES YOU FOR DOING DIFFERENTLY THAN SHE WISHED. UNLESS SHE CAN DO THAT, DISRUPTION, DEPRESSION, AND DISCIPLINE PROBLEMS WILL PLAGUE YOUR HOME AND WORSEN OVER TIME WITH HER PRESENCE.

Thoughts, Sir Guy?

IT’S YOUR NEST. KICK OBSTRUCTIONS OUT OF THE WAY. SHOW MOM THE DOOR EACH TIME SHE DISPLEASES YOU REGARDING THE KIDS. AS A DISRUPTER, SHE DOESN’T DESERVE YOUR COMPANY. KEEP YOUR MORALE UP AS BEING A GRATEFUL MOM. ADMIRE HUBBY AS GOOD LEADER, FATHER FIGURE, AND FOR HIS STRONG CHARACTER IN BACKING YOU.

YOUR MIGHT WANT TO CONSIDER THIS. LET ME BE THE HEAVY. LET YOUR MOTHER READ IN PRIVATE WHAT YOU AND I HAVE WRITTEN ABOVE. SHE WILL TAKE OFFENSE AND TAKE IT BIG TIME DEPENDING ON WHETHER SHE ACCEPTS OR DENIES IT. SHE MAY DEPART YOUR LIFE FOR SOME UNDETERMINED TIME. BUT SOONER OR LATER SHE WILL PROBABLY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT SHE WAS WRONG AND RETURN TO YOUR EMBRACE. THE MAGIC WORD OF RECOVERY IS FORGIVENESS FOR EVERYONE INVOLVED AND EVERY THING DONE IN THE PAST.

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