I’m reminded once again that I don’t recognize the prevailing conditions in modern life. Things aren’t as simple as I portray them. It’s true but intended. I try to stick exclusively to how men and women act and react as if they were born as full size adults. That is, their God-given, Nature endowed, and hormone driven selves before their hearts and minds are loaded with experiences, ambitions, abilities, beliefs, and values about themselves and others. It’s their default condition. Out of how both sexes are made naturally, women can figure out who and what they and men are and develop their relationship expertise from it.
To further elaborate, in a day or two I will post a new summary of how God, Nature, and hormones empower women to generate compatibility with a man. (Completed as #1883.)
These don’t seem to make much difference: good intentions, love, words, actions, commitment, devotion, counseling, recovery, marriage, co-habiting, separation, rewards, self-esteem, empowerment, religion. There’s no solid connections and confusion reigns about making relationships work. Sex interferes with successful dating, impatience with successful courting, and personality discouragements with successful marriage. No one really knows specifically what to do except that self-aggrandizement prevails; one or both partners always come before the other on critical matters or most issues.
Daily blog articles describe what women never hear, but it leaves them to figure out how to use what they read. This project describes how to negotiate marital agreements that coalesce into a virtual contract. It’s a vital but previously undisclosed early step on the road to becoming a successful wife and later the matriarch of a great family.
One Purpose. I labor to prove these long-ignored but critical themes.
- Love and nurturing may be the glue but mutual respect fed by good leadership by every family member—even toddlers—generates success that enables harmony within families.
- Men marry for the promise they perceive in a woman whom they expect not to change from what she appears to promise. Modern men, however, face a huge contradiction and they don’t like surprises.
- Women marry for the promise they perceive in a man whom they expect to change as needed to help fulfill female hopes and dreams. Modern women also face a huge contradiction, but they welcome surprises that are challenging instead of burdensome.
The contradictions are obstacles to overcome because both sexes are created to become highly compatible as mates. The process starts when leaders take charge of themselves before they take charge of others.
Another Purpose. I describe ways to overcome the obstacles inherent in natural contradictions between the sexes. Specifically:
- Males become natural role models through direct actions, that is, leadership by directness. Females become effective influence dealers through seed planting and patience, that is, leadership by indirectness.
- A man expects his bride not to change after they marry. Women are not only willing to change to get their way when living with someone, they expect to change and have their man accept it either knowingly or unknowingly.
- Husbands don’t expect to change, won’t change, and they resist it except under one condition. They will listen and heed one woman; the one to whom they are devoted but only if she reflects her expectations indirectly and without challenge, blame, and guilt. That is, once again, leadership by indirectness.
- Both sexes are unschooled and seemingly uninterested in improving their leadership above and beyond what they have absorbed accidentally in life. Feminism discourages finesse and sophistication for women, which makes men abstain from any concern with it.
- Leadership by example is the most effective kind for both sexes. But the lessons take time to be absorbed. Leadership by indirectness, however, is essential for wives to lead husbands. Children readily follow direct and indirect leadership provided it makes sons feel they are admired and daughters feel they are important.
I present a model marriage contract as if already worked out by a Mr. Good Enough and Ms. I Want Her. The model consists of two checklists for both to approve or negotiate away the shortcomings and incompatible expectations. Think of it as an informal, unwritten pre-nup contract to be negotiated and agreed to by both parties in a courtship, or a post-nup for marriages in need of maintenance. (Again, men won’t and really can’t do relationship maintenance; it’s up to women.)
In what follows below, a hypothetical husband and wife describe natural urges expected to dominate their behavior inside marriage. I use their natures to create a foundation upon which they can make marriage work to the advantage of all concerned. However, I’ve also injected leadership as the difference-maker, the smoother-outer of marital turmoil, the creator of respect that quenches disrespect before it emerges and offends.
Does the give and take of what follows appear unequal? It will to some ladies. But it should be fair considering that God designs, Nature endows, and hormones make the sexes capable, but each couple must make themselves compatible for successful mating.
Man-think has ruled the world throughout recorded history. In modern lingo man-think looks like the following when a man has the fair-minded character and is invited to disclose his expectations for married life.
I AM HUSBAND
AUTHOR’S NOTE: I AM HUSBAND describes the male nature as if verbalized by a man expecting to marry or already married. By way of negotiating future plans or settling future life together, he pledges his interest and expresses his expectations in order to gain a better understanding for blending their lives into a compatible or more compatible couple. However, we all know that no man would be so expressive or disclose so much, probably because he never thinks about such things so deliberately and clearly. Also, men don’t think they have to explain their nature, but women sure wish they would. Consequently, I write to inform women of what they are likely to see reflected in manly actions and attitudes rather than words.
1. I acknowledge that my job comes first. Without complete freedom to make decisions about who, where, when, why, and how I work, I cannot fulfill my responsibility to provide and protect my family as I know I should. The trust I need to succeed comes only from the respect and gratitude I receive for knowing what is best for my family.
2. Of course husbanding is also my job; that is why I work so hard at it. Second only to providing and protecting, my responsibility includes making and keeping it enjoyable and rewarding for my wife too.
3. Of course fathering is both my job and honorable when I do it well. It’s third to the tasks above. My wife as their mother shapes our children’s health and character, teaches them right and wrong. I enable her with support and empower her with all the decision-making authority to do her job well. I trust her mother-love to guide her appropriately and more endearing than I ever could.
4. I am responsible for the religious spirit that pervades my family and within which our children will be raised, whether I participate, teach it, or let someone else. If I ignore it, I will support my wife in her religious upbringing of the children, which means I am still responsible to see that the kids more easily follow her leadership.
5. I organize my family within this rank structure in order to generate and sustain mutual respect and cooperative family life.
- I am responsible for good order and discipline. While I am the final authority, I am not the only one.
- Wife as my mate works for and reports to me. She is the CEO but I am chairman. She is responsible to harmonize the efforts of family members into a cooperative and rewarding whole of mutual enjoyment of and for each other.
- Wife in her mother role works for and reports to herself as CEO. She determines what is best for our children and I am responsible to reinforce her discipline and not impose mine over hers. When I disagree with her on matters regarding the children, she is automatically upgraded to final authority and I remain her helpmate for advice.
- I as father work for and report to their mother regarding the children. I am responsible to heed her advice about children’s matters and advise as requested.
- Each child is responsible to learn, honor, and participate willingly in the ways of our family. Their leadership abilities develop and show up as they embrace siblings as most highly valued friends.
- All children that live in our home, regardless of parentage, will be treated as if siblings born of the same mother and father. Wife and I will fake it if we have to such that all our children see us as the equivalent or better of biological parents.
6. Although not consistent with my nature, I recognize that thoughtfulness and intimacy are more important than sex to promote family harmony. While wife is responsible for orchestrating what happens in our home, harmony begins with thoughtfulness by me and intimacy with me. So, she cannot do what I expect when I fail to do what she needs and deserves.
7. Wife and I committed at the altar to devote ourselves to each other for life. I acknowledge that commitment can be confirmed by words but that devotion only appears through action. Neither of us deserves to be shortchanged with the lack of devoted actions. Time spent in someone’s presence rates the same as action.
8. There are some things that I cannot excuse in my wife. Embarrass me before friends or family; presume my best is not enough, use sex to get her way, challenge my authority in front of others, deny or contradict in words or deeds my claim of being a good sex partner.
9. In order to respect my own integrity, I pledge to myself that I will be sexually faithful to the woman to whom I vow it. However, my integrity is vulnerable. Disrespect weakens it. Ridicule and scorn crumble it. Derision and mockery kill it along with associated promises.
10. Every step my wife takes away from feminine attractiveness or toward manliness forfeits more of her likeability and influence with me.
11. Three women dominate the female side of my life. I vow and thus dedicate my life to my wife, keep a childlike devotion to my mother, and pledge affection plus the hope of love for my mother-in-law. Expect no less, so long as my integrity remains intact.
12. My wife’s parents are always welcome in our home. Unless, however, I wish or ask to involve my mother-in-law, our home and all relationships within it are none of her business. My wife is responsible to keep her mother’s nose out of our affairs, and her sisters’ noses too. I shall be responsible for her father and brothers in such matters. Of course I make exceptions for wedding plans and functions.
13. My wife and I shall plan and work out the details of handling our finances in this priority order. We will fund from the top down.
- Tithe and charity
- Long range savings
- Christmas and vacation
- Housing and car costs
- Child care including clothing, toys, etc.
- Personal, pocket money, and entertainment.
14. I expect these leadership principles to be learned and become standard practice by family members:
- Responsibility means duty or obligation and with it goes authority to do the job and being held accountable for satisfactory performance. Without all three principles embodied in the same person, leadership dissipates into confusion, disorder, blame, and disrespect.
- Authority means the resources and decision-making power one has to do their duty.
- Accountability means answering for what one did, whether good (reward-able) or bad in terms of duty, behavior, or family expectations.
- Children become leaders as soon as they are assigned duties. Even toddlers become leaders as soon as parents match up four things that put decision-making authority in their hands and minds. 1) Help a child with his major interest, namely self-development, which adults call play. 2) Assign new responsibilities that match the upper edge of his maturity. 3) Find some way to add fun. 4) Reward a good job but ignore what is poorly done. Let poor performance soak into his mind as he measures the glory of reward against his performance that eventually soaks in as disappointment for the boss. The boss can’t make leaders of good followers without letting the followers live with their own results that don’t quite measure up to those of the boss.
- All family members are restricted by this rule. They should not tell someone else HOW to fulfill their responsibility. It reduces authority of the doer, which shifts responsibility to the teller. In my family, development of respectable leaders is more important than the tasks at hand (unless of course it’s vital or an emergency). Living with the judgments of underlings develops leadership character in those above. When someone higher in the family makes decisions for underlings, they assume responsibility and also take blame for disrupting good order and discipline. If someone lower challenges a higher up that does it, they are not qualified and should not take offense when ignored.
15. As chairman I am similar to the $1 a year government executive. Remuneration comes from faith, gratefulness, and reliance that my family possesses that I do my duty and do it well. Mostly, that is, providing and protecting my family. I expect a payday every day when I touch, stroke, and view the same woman as on our honeymoon—pretty, attractive, and appealing as if courtship never ended (allowing of course for aging but little else). When she looks and feels like the gal I married, I continue powerfully energized to tackle the world on her behalf.
16. Tie Breaker. We will encounter moments of disagreement on simple things. Some examples: What flick to see, where to eat out, Chinese or Mexican? Or perhaps, when one of us completes some task, I say ‘more is better’ and you say not, or you say ‘more is better’ and I say not. I propose this solution. On such simple matters and long before disputes can arise, you ‘own’ the odd-numbered days and make the call. Moreover, you can’t escape. You have to make the decision and I have to go along willingly, pleasantly and enjoyably. It’s my obligation and signals not only my love but my respect for your esteemed ability to make judgments that satisfy both of us. On even-numbered days that I ‘own’, it works exactly in reverse. You note, of course, that you ‘own’ 7 or 8 more days each year. I give you that advantage as tribute to your sound decision-making ability. 
17. I’ve been told that I’m a command and control kind of guy and not a very good candidate for marriage. Sorry about that but you are worth me being up front, blunt, and candid. I acknowledge that you’re a smoother, unaggressive, and encouragement kind of gal. There are times when your thoughtful, endearing, but assertive manner is better than mine and vice versa. I hope to work the kinks out early in courtship or marriage so that whatever approach is most appropriate and used, then the other one acknowledges the usefulness and appreciates the results. 
18. In case you haven’t noticed the difference, I LOVE to please you when it’s my idea. I LIKE to please you when it’s your idea. Provided, however, your idea is expressed not more than once or twice and excludes criticism, nagging, and anger. 
19. Allow me to explain masculine gifting. For the most part, I don’t know how to match your tastes and preferences, not even in flowers, chocolate, and jewelry. Moreover, they get old pretty soon for two reasons—to me as giver that is. a) As regular gifts, they lose their meaning except perhaps as a surprise. (But I don’t gift for the surprise effect; I just don’t think that way.) Surprising you don’t please me regardless of the affection you return, once the surprise is over and you don’t wear the jewelry, nightie, perfume, or Victoria’s Secret latest and greatest. b) I get little or no feeling of pleasing you with the same gifts all the time. I look for other options, and invariably they lead to man-think: What gift would enable you to become better at accomplishing things? New vacuum? Dish washer? Stove? Washer? Those are man-think things. These are femmy surprise gifts into which I must be dragged kicking and screaming all the way: Weekend away for no other reason than to get out of the house. Femmy restaurants (tiniest of tables, seats, and aisles). Shopping (except for cars and man-toys of course). So, in the end, learning to please you of my own accord will probably be an unsettling process for you. I can only hope that we can work out some SILENTLY AGREED-TO PROCESS that welds rather than breaks us apart.
This sums it up: Men are attracted to women by their appearance but wives best keep husbands by feeling physically the same way as when they married. Pregnancy is but a minor interruption completely justified by the family situation. IOW, lose the post-partum extra weight. I as your husband don’t expect it to be fatal for our relationship, but it is instructive of how important I am to you. 
SHE MAKES MARRIAGE WORK
Woman-think rules the home in advanced societies. Nowadays, however, the cultural fallout of Feminism makes man-think the predominant power. What does it take to overcome modern pressures? It takes women who pay attention to their nature—their need, drive, and ability—and early girlhood hopes and dreams. They learn to ignore pop culture values, feminist propaganda, and what other women say. They follow instincts and intuitions emanating from their modest hearts and expect the same natural obedience of men to their own nature. She can lead a husband to think, but she can’t make him matter in their lives—until and unless he wants to.
Out of the mix and match of their primal natures, one woman takes one man and convinces him that she is the epitome of his expectations for a mate. Men won’t and can’t do it. Each gal has to learn to overcome natural male resistance with the tremendous and superior-to-men’s ability provided by God’s design, Nature’s endowments, and hormonal guidance. Traits and skills she ‘inherited’ at birth onto which she attaches knowledge about men with her hopes and dreams earned in early girlhood and with emphasis on early girlhood.
I AM WIFE
- Above all else, I like, approve, and admire any man if that shown above applies to him, if he commits to it. What an admirable and enjoyable man just from the way he describes his interest in me.
- I acknowledge that my primary job is wife to him. I also accept and plan to function according to the rank structure he outlines above.
- In accepting what he proposes, however, I reserve the right to object later. If and when it happens, I shall take up the issue respectably and without challenge and out of view and earshot of others.
- I accept the dual responsibility of wife and mother. I am challenged but more than able to discriminate when husband comes before children and circumstances justify the reverse.
- The home is my domain and he expects a castle. I will deliver it if he informs me of what he MUST have, tells me WHAT but not HOW to do it, and provides the support and encouragement needed for my morale.
- I have been letting my taste buds overrule common sense. I have not been preparing my thoughts and habits for what he and I are considering, but I am underway to change. I acknowledge that men want their woman to physically look and feel the same for life, wrinkles from aging excepted of course. Given that I’ve been remiss, he can expect and I hope forgive the corrective action I take toward restoration to that which pleases him most.
- The home is my domain to administer and prevent disputes. Therefore, I hereby proclaim that he being the heavy and me being the lighter lifter, the commode shall be kept closed except when in use and then re-closed by the user. (Ain’t life great when teamwork goes exactly as I say?)
- As an outsider, my input is unwelcome in his workplace for two reasons: He would be disrespected for it, and either that or what I say could tamper with his self-confidence or effectiveness on the job. Except as it affects family schedules and support, I will NOT inquire about his job or expect him to please me about it. If and when he chooses to disclose, I shall wait, listen, commiserate, and encourage but offer no advice unless he asks—repeat: offer no advice unless he asks.
- As both wife and mother, I feel best about myself when I nest, nurture, nestle, and otherwise serve and care for my loved ones. When I expect compensating attention or reciprocity from husband, I recognize that I needlessly doom myself to despair, when my own actions don’t cure low morale and even depression.
- Being a woman, I crave happiness. My greatest expectation for husband is that he help me find ways and things about which I am or can become grateful. The more grateful I am for him, our children, and our home, the happier I will be for our marriage. The happier I am, the better harmonizer I become.
- Until they have passed puberty, I emphasize teaching right, wrong, and self-discipline to our children. Husband must accept the obligation to set good examples that reinforce my teachings.
- I shall raise our boys in the image and character of their father and expect him to raise our daughters in the image and character of me. Two main requirements determine success. We never criticize each other in front of the children. We daily affirm each other with displays of mutual gratefulness, admiration, and importance in their presence.
- I shall capitalize on my primary strength. I lead myself by using ‘pretty time’* in the morning in order to take charge of my day and all that’s coming. I lead the children by example, especially with a great attitude at breakfast time and school departure and return. *Blog articles 806 and 1146 and 2123-2127.
- I shall learn and specialize in using indirectness to persuade husband to see things my way. I shall never challenge him in front of anyone else.
- I understand that respect flows out of trust and vice versa. It is incumbent on higher ups to show trust downward in order to earn respect and to respect downward in order to earn trust upward. Unless both are shown by higher ups first, however, neither trust nor respect fully develops. Husband is highest by virtue of rank and toddlers rank last and children according to age.
- I acknowledge a womanly shortcoming and pledge to avoid it. I shall do my best, even if provoked, to avoid the seemingly small and incidental nags and criticisms that irritate the masculine persona. I recognize that the self-fulfilling prophecy shapes our lives, and so I will focus on positives and try my best to ignore negatives or else reshape them into affirming thoughts.
- People don’t improve by being told of their faults. They improve to meet the expectations of those they like, admire, and respect—those who cite their strengths and reliability. Husbands are people, but so are wives and children.
- I shall restrict conversations with girlfriends and family to matters other than reflecting discredit on him. I understand the more that women trash-talk masculine characteristics, the less men respect and honor female sensibilities. That’s one reason why husband won’t be the subject of my girlfriend-chatter. The other reason? He doesn’t deserve to be bad-mouthed. Revenge kills relationships. He may make me feel inadequate or worse. I just have to tough it out until I muster the courage and leadership to take it up with him only.
- I understand that his wandering eye is natural to fit his hunter’s persona. However, I give him credit to know this. More than an instantaneous swiveling of the eyes offends me. I can live with that but he should know that each swivel however short takes my enjoyment away from his presence.
- Unlike men, women like to change whatever and whomever they find as inadequate—oftentimes parenting husbands as boys. You can bet that I shall avoid that.
- I bow to this masculine logic. In our house we will avoid the use of two terms as goals or expectations for ourselves and children—perfection and equality. Striving to satisfy self and others will be used instead of expecting or demanding perfection. Striving for fairness to settle disputes will be used to replace equality as the objective.
- At no time will marriage or child-raising problems be exposed to the children, unless a child in trouble should be involved, in which case we shall take it away from the eyes and ears of others. All family members shall adopt this standard—praise in public, chastise in private. Children shall never be disciplined in public or before others. If they are intolerable, they shall be gently towed by the hand into a private place and dealt with there. If husband is present when it happens in public, he does it.
- Spanking a child on the rump—not gently but not hammering either—reminds of wrongness rather than causes pain. Reminders teach; pain earns hostility. Parents become more respectable as leaders when they punish a child less than what kid thinks he deserves. (Yes, kids brag of getting away with light punishment, but respect and trust for the one who punishes are not weakened. Kids know they do wrong and when they deserve to be dealt with. If they don’t get what they know they deserve, they learn to reward themselves with greater accomplishments that people consider to be bigger wrongs. Admirable behavior cannot be beaten into a child without other consequences of parental dislike.)
- As a matter of policy, full disclosure is forbidden. Family member faults, shortcomings, private affairs, and mistakes are not open for discussion by children, and parents will take such issues offline and behind closed doors.
- All husband-wife issues and problems will take place out of eyesight and hearing range of the children. Husband-wife contradictions are none of the children’s business. I shall endeavor to expose the children exclusively to the happier side of our marriage and brighter side of their future after they marry. (If they don’t look forward to their own marriages, our grandchildren won’t be the best they could be with parents better prepared by us.)
- Your mother and me. I understand that you’re attached to your mom with great loyalty. However, I never have and never will do things as she does them. I can like, befriend, and love her but I can’t duplicate her and don’t intend to try. So, don’t compare me with your supermom; it automatically devalues my effort and worth and puts me on the spot of failing before you consider my situation and pressures. You see, your mom always pleases you. I intend to do that too, but in my own way, time, and situations of my making, not hers. If you expect something else, we shouldn’t marry. 
- If we don’t resolve this up front, I expect that we will battle over it. You want your castle to be made functional for all that you do and hope to do, whether card playing or car repair. I want my nest to reflect warmth, status, and with my persona stamped imaginatively upon it. I don’t know where, how, and when we will find balance to please us both, but I will try and ask that we negotiate rather than battle over it. 
EDITOR’S NOTE: Item 28 next describes the female nature as if verbalized by a woman expecting to marry, as if she’s questioned or questioning a man about pledging themselves to each other. No woman could phrase it this way, but she craves to hear positive and affirming answers to the spirit of it. Beneath all their interactions with a man, women search for answers to this.
28. I expect to marry on the promise you show for brightening my long-range future. Few things offer more promise than hearing you say things similar to this:
- While it goes against my nature to talk about and do this, my love for you and vision of us together makes you worth it. According to recent surveys, delaying our first sex together until our wedding night will enable us to have a more satisfying, communicative, and stable marriage. Deferred gratification will also enable us to develop a more mutual understanding, generate mutually enjoyable habits, and strengthen our marital character. I’m not sure how, but it seems to work and I’ll buy into it because I love you so much.
If you can’t pledge that, how much dedication to my interest for a life together (i.e., my worth, your devotion, and our mutual promise) do you really show? 
[Editor’s Note: If he turns out to actually be that passive about trying to get her in bed before marriage, she will resent it as reflecting that her sexual assets are not important enough to him. Women frequently create such dilemmas for themselves; they long to see something they imagine about men more than actually having it. They don’t always like getting what they wish for.]
29. [Editor’s Note: Once again, women could never verbalize this as written. It’s in every woman’s best interest, however, to lay her cards on the table so that her intended learns that she has matters worthy of privacy, worthy of independence, worthy of forgetting her own past in order to work with him on their future together. What kind of husband will he make if he can’t abide by her expectations that have nothing to do with him—past, present, or future? She proposes the following in some form suitable to her and her expectation of him.]
I ask that you take this as firmness and not harshness, as forgettable and not as if I poke a stick in your eye. Just as yours is none of my business, my sexual history is none of yours. I would rather have your curiosity and imagination make you green-eyed jealous of every man than having you face the embarrassment and me facing your harsh judgment when we encounter a man you know or suspect that I may have slept with. Furthermore, don’t assume that I’m not a virgin. It doesn’t matter as it has no effect on our future if we should continue with plans to marry.
Be assured of this. I would not be on the verge of marrying you, if I had the slightest interest in any other man—past, present, or future. I figure you would like full disclosure, but equally full disclosure isn’t possible and fair full disclosure immensely disfavors me.
Men judge women harshly for unmarried sleeping with other men. What a man knows about his woman’s history can be neither forgiven nor forgotten; it haunts and reinforces anger caused by other things, which also too easily inspire him to mistreat out of regret or abuse out of spite. I’m not saying you’re like that, but instinct tells me to not risk it with any man I might marry. I ask that you not take it personal, because on this privacy matter I treat all men alike.
You of course argue back that I don’t trust you. I argue forward that trust from me comes from being respected by you, and that comes from you accepting my standard about the privacy of my sexual history, whether or not any exists outside of previous marriages.
We women are more lenient, forgiving, and forgetful about a man’s sexual history. Consequently, you’re off the hook before we proceed any further in melding two lives into one. 
EDITOR’S NOTE: Not surprisingly this post attracted criticism of much relevance and magnitude. It proposes that women follow a course of action that’s difficult to comprehend much less to do it. It deals with declaring her sexual history sacrosanct and too private to disclose to a man she’s about to marry. Actually, in modern times it’s pretty incredible and seemingly impractical. Even if she can’t do it, can’t be successful attempting it, she brings out in the open her determination to win respect for her individualism.
I received a man’s credible rebuttal. The subject warrants further comment, and so I added his unedited rebuttal and my response below. You’re invited to read his views of modern man. He explains modern man-think very well in contradiction to the basic article above. I don’t challenge his beliefs but describe how the male nature works compared to his modern man-think so that women can draw their own conclusions.
REBUTTAL FROM READER, “SOME OTHER GUY”:
I have an immense respect for your views Sir Guy. But the “don’t ask/don’t tell” policy is just not going to cut it with me. My potential bride to be will have to tell me something or I am going to imagine the worst. In my book, your past is part of who you are. If you are ashamed of your past, and feel you need to hide it, then I have reason to doubt each and every part of you. I also learn more about you in listening to how you describe these experiences. In my mind these are too important of life events to be hidden. If you describe past sexual partners in the most casual of ways, then I would not want to marry you. And having that hidden from me is just unfair and is going to make me think the worst.
Now let’s turn the tables. Should I refuse to divulge my past bankruptcies, my past divorces, my past criminal histories? After all, my divorce is in the past. If there were no children, then why does my fiancée need to know about my ex wife if fiancée can hide her sexual past. Or maybe I can elect to hide from her that I have been fired from several jobs in the past.
I can come up with any number of these comparisons. But if my fiancée can’t come clean to me about her past, it means she feels perfectly fine hiding things from me. So I have to ask, what else is she hiding? And what will she feel comfortable about hiding once we are married. It’s a slippery slope isn’t it?
The thing is people aren’t getting married at 18 years old any more. If I am going to marry a 26-year-old woman, I’m not going to be shocked if she’s loved men before, been loved by men before and not shocked if she’s slept with them. It would be odd if she didn’t have some of the in the past. I’m not going to crucify her for being human. But I am going to want to know why and how those other relationships ended and how important they were to her. If she doesn’t tell me, I will be imagining things that are 10x worse than reality.
I am not saying your way is wrong Sir Guy. And in fact it may be the best way for the majority of people, but for me, it would be a deal breaker. I would refuse to marry her.
My 2 cents my friend.
RESPONSE BY THE AUTHOR, GUY:
Sir Some Other Guy,
Thank you, my friend. You’re right and I’m not surprised that “don’t ask/don’t tell” won’t work for you and probably most men. You describe and justify modern man-think.
However, who she slept with is DIFFERENT from divorces, bankruptcies, job firings, and criminal experiences. Those are choices made. A primal urge, a competitive instinct, drives men to want to know about her sexual past, and that’s a whopper of a difference between the sexes. Women can let love justify a man’s past relationships, but men are not so endowed. That she did it is sufficient for his competitive nature to subconsciously hold it against her forever. Past marriages justify it to men but accepting it for love is woman-think. (Admittedly, modern men copy woman-think practices because they have few choices. If he has to know her unmarried sexual history, he finds empathetic justification or rationalizes it into acceptability. ‘Love’ cures everything, but men don’t love as women love.)
In today’s male-dominated culture, men expect to demand and be told. They see and receive so much sex outside the marital bed that they can’t respect, trust, or not know her record. Cheap and easy unmarried sex makes society revolve around these causes and effects. Men don’t respect women enough because women don’t earn the respect of men; women don’t promote and live up to high standards and expect men to live up to female- and children-friendly values. Thus, men can’t respect a woman’s desire for privacy about her sexual history because she’s not respected enough as a quality person worthy of masculine trust and devotion. Cheap and easy sex continually energizes those causes and effects.
As I recall it, the Uniform of Military Justice defines rape as “penetration however slight is sufficient to complete the offense.” That’s the way it is with her sexual history. The details are irrelevant. Did she or didn’t she. If yes, she’s guilty. Her best plea bargain is to negotiate her devotion for his respect of her privacy but just on that one subject.
You make the case that if she did it for love and he can verify it from her telling, he can live with it. But can he forget it? Can he forgive her? Can he promise and obey that it will never be held in background with amplifying emotions used against her in some fit of frustration, anger, mistreatment, or abuse?
What Women Never Hear is about the hurt that modern man-think imposes on women and children. I describe ways that woman-think can be reshaped to take advantage of sex differences and restore women as the cultural leaders that our Judeo-Christian value system enabled and encouraged in America’s first three centuries. (A new article about that leadership is almost done and should appear in a day or two.)
I propose that women use this post pretty much like a checklist to gain mutual agreement. Does I Am Husband match your man’s character? Can and will he live it accordingly? Can you live with I Am Wife? Can you continue it after marriage?
Can you both agree to live according to the principles, policies, and practices described above? If yes and in total agreement, then your prospects for success in marriage are greatly improved. If not in agreement, can you negotiate adjustments that are mutually agreeable? If so, success may follow. If not, you may not be right for each other.
Compatible is as compatible does, to paraphrase a well-known philosopher.
No doubt readers’ questions will generate more thoughts, more conditions, more exceptions, more expectations. As questions are reported on the blog, I will respond to all.