Many men have bad habits that challenge their mate’s ability to live with them. The habits are rooted in this natural phenomenon; men are born with self-respect. (Just as women are born alternatively with self-love.) In the hearts and minds of men throughout life, no gap should exist between their respect of self and that shown by others. Enough respect shown by others makes a man satisfied with himself; it confirms his self-respect. Lack of ongoing confirmation puts him in flight or fight mode. Boys are too dependent for flight, and so they learn to fight for more respect from others. The more they fight the more bad habits they develop.
Boys who perceive no gap appear as sterling characters in the world of women. With a gap developed in childhood, however, men appear troublesome and even unwanted by women. The wider the gap is, the more troublesome the boy and man develops. Parents deserve credit for no gap and blame for the gap in childhood. Gap or no gap, it shapes the rest of a man’s life. I describe the best and worst case scenarios.
1) Best Habit Development. Boys get more or at least enough of the respect they think they deserve. They grow up satisfied with their lot as worthy individuals. They get that way when parents treat them respectfully more than the boys think they deserve, and when parents teach them to respect others equally and unconditionally. Respect others first as a person, second according to sex, and third according to the respectability that others earn in the various roles they fill in life.
Satisfied they are respected sufficiently, boys and men interact reasonably with their male competitors and cooperate pleasingly with women and pleasantly with others. Everyone that associates with them finds kind and usually pleasant relations. They seem to naturally resonate with conviction that we are all created to do good in our lives.
Development of such a man starts in toddlerhood after his conscious mind becomes aware that he’s a person too. With more-than-deserved respect shown him as a person before puberty, he passes through it and comes out strongly dedicated to earning respect by accomplishing man-like things. His maturity shines. People that interact respect him as mature for his age and potentially a good man.
Thus, young boys learn and develop good habits that expose their characters as complimentary and which governs teen and adult life.
2) Worst Habit Development. Commencing in toddlerhood, many boys perceive that a gap exists between their sense of self-respect and the respect shown by others. Before puberty it means respect as a person. After puberty it means respect also as a man. After about age 21 it means respect also for accomplishments and authority in his various roles in life—sailor, father, aviator, brother, boyfriend, student, officer, son, husband, financial genius, friend, ….
Such boys take action to improve their self-respect but with negative results. The effects further harden their already hard-hearted and hard-minded nature. Instead of earning more respect from others to close the gap, they fight back. They more vigorously defend their dignity and importance in various roles in life and the gap widens.
They go into compete mode with the very people from whom they expect more respect. The naturalness of it shows up when toddlers resist, resent, and even retaliate against parental dictates. As they grow and they perceive the gap widening, they become meaner to some but acquiescent to others—such as their peers, bosses, or grannies—whose help they need to compensate for lack of success elsewhere in life.
When such toddlers, boys, and men discover their fight-back efforts are unproductive, that their objectives are unachievable, they try harder with negative effect until it becomes too difficult. Then, they turn to anger, bitterness, and striking out even at those they love. They also become vulnerable to deeper and more complex bad habits of thought and emotion that grow and compound throughout life.
Without a strong foundation of respect that a prepubescent boy expects as a person, he passes puberty strongly dedicated to earning it as a teenage ‘man’. (Think absent father or ghetto life for extreme manifestations.) Epitomizing immaturity and regardless of the problems caused for self and others, he strives to be a man in teen clothing and the immature habits follow him into adulthood.
Good looks notwithstanding, such men become less attractive by turning people off. Many bad habits bunched in one man can overpower a woman’s best efforts to harmonize home or even marriage.
NOTE THIS: Bad habits are rooted in lack of or disrespect shown to boys. Sorry, mother, but your love isn’t enough for boys if their father overwhelms your respectful and respecting nurturing with his disrespect or absence. To be described in a later post, a mother’s greatest gift to her children convinces their father to respect them first and above all else including obedience and discipline. If successful, it enables her to brilliantly harmonize both nest and family.
Bad habits include these rooted in childhood:
- He unloads onto her his anger at someone else.
- He expresses fury at her to win arguments. It activates her guilt complex, she infers that she’s to blame, and it steals her thunder in arguments.
- When she appeals for relief from a bad habit, he infers that she’s trying to change him and his habit worsens for the moment. If his obstinacy rises, he may retaliate.
- He bullies her.
- His attitude sours at the merest hint that he may be wrong or causes a problem.
- He finds humor in others but not in her. At home he’s humorless.
- He refuses to show common everyday respect for others, including people providing him service.
- He’s reluctant to express his love openly and displays a bad case of A.D.D. (Affection Delivery Disorder)
- He lacks self-control and is poster boy for bad or violent temper.
- He’s not only reluctant to forgive and forget, he is incapable of forgetting.
- He routinely insists on his way or the highway.
- He’s unable to understand and accept her definition of first-level cheating as emotional infidelity. He insists that only physical unfaithfulness is cheating.
- He objects strongly and even refuses to seek counseling, much less attend.
- He far too easily becomes suspicious that his mate cheats or is cheating.
- He depends on work more than family for personal satisfaction.
- He claims that respect must be earned before it is given, which causes him to expect too highly of mate and children before he shows appreciation.
- He belittles weaker people to please himself or uplift his self-image.
- He possesses the most brittle of egos.
As men compete to get their way with less than adequate respect from others, they easily develop bad habits that harden their hearts and minds against cooperating fully with their mates. Bad habits are not admired, much less seen as virtuous. Consequently, their women are loath to show respect, which turns their man off, which makes him show less or no love, which turns her off and pushes her to withdraw from showing respect, which turns him off, which turns her off further, and which weakens if not destroys both likeability and compatibility in one or both.
It’s a closed loop, and different results come only one way. Unconditional respect for her man confirms his self-respect, satisfies what he seeks first with her, and stimulates attention, affection, pleasing actions, and avoidance of bad habits. Again, as women go, so goes society—and unconditional respect for men generally and one man individually promote the best kind of society for women and children.
Self-respect and respect from others dominate a man’s life. When the respect he’s shown at a given moment doesn’t meet his expectations as developed by experience, he develops or falls back on bad habits and can become an incompetent—but not necessarily hopeless—mate.