The Honeymoon is over, maybe it has been over along time, maybe just a few weeks, and either way the spark is probably dying or has been at a very low ember for a while. It will probably take a good stoking to get a fire burning again. Let's see what we can use to rekindle that ember into a blaze!
Why not start with some ground rules to use as kindling. Here are some basic tips:
4. Do not nag
5. Do not "put down" or find fault
6. Do not pout
7. Do not use your menstrual cycles as an excuse to be mean or crabby
8. Do not expose your mate's shortcomings or your sexual experiences to your "girl friend" or family
9. Make your man the primary person in your life
10. Keep yourself presentable around the house
11. Keep as clean and neat a home as possible
12. Have a prearranged time for romantic encounters
13. Have spontaneous romantic encounters.
14. No phones to be talking on when he is home
15. Do not over use computers or TV
16. Have as many home cooked sit down meals as possible
17. Be respectful to his family even when difficult
18. Be receptive to his spending time with his friends or doing sports
19. Learn to like and share his hobbies and interests
Okay, let's expand and analyze these points :
1 through 4: The hardest and most ignored aspects of good relationships in all areas of life, and especially in man, woman relationships is communication.
1. Guess what ladies? Men do not know what you are thinking, or why you are upset, or what you are angry about! When they ask "What is the Matter?" or "What's your Problem?" the classic female answer is "nothing". Oh how happy that makes the male! Now he has nothing to deal with, he is off the hook! The female has just given him permission to go on about his business, because there is nothing wrong, she is just being a "female "and in a bad mood, and he is being a good guy and just letting her get over her tiff! The female of the species now has the right to be hurt and upset because he has no clue what the problem is. He really should know what he did or did not do to hurt her! Wrong, wrong, wrong ladies! He really does not know, he is oblivious to your body language, your hurt expressions, or harsh words, he is a man. Men do not feed off your emotions, they believe your words. Ladies, tell him, as quietly as possible exactly what is bothering you, or what is wrong in your relationship, ask him to please listen and be willing to discuss things, not fight and argue, or walk away. If this is new to your relationship, you might try writing him a letter to get his attention, if he won't listen, or tries to pooh your hurts or concerns. This will take time and consideration, and lots and lots of practice. Do not demand, be gentle and state your case with love, try not to let frustration or anger get in the way of your communication. Reinforce your love for your man and stress the need for him to listen to you with respect and attention and in return, show him that you will listen and respect his point of view. Do not hide your feelings and allow them to grow into massive obstacles to your relationship. Encourage your man to state his feelings and concerns also. This will be the biggest challenge, until he sees how this strengthens your love and concern for each other. Talk, talk, and talk.
2. Set perimeters as to who does what around the house.
Do not pout if he does not help, talk with him tell him what you need him to do to help you. Each of you does the jobs you are best at. Even if you do not work outside the home, he still needs to have chores to do, with you taking the heavier load. Make him feel essential to the everyday running of your life and home. If you have children, use your individual talents to instruct and guide them, share their raising, decide together what their rules and rewards will be. Stick together and stand your ground, be consistent. Share your children, talk to them separately and together, encourage them to discuss everything in their lives with you, no surprises. Discuss your children, don't fight over them, and do not let them cause dissension between you. Enjoy them. Be a talking family.
3. Plan your activities together, no surprises as to who is coming to dinner, or spending the week end or what the children are committed to in activities and when their friends will be over. No surprise "Family" visits. Plan your only the two of you times together, talk about each others hobbies, sports, friends, be honest about your feelings and likes and dislikes about these things. Give, take, and compromise. You really cam put up with his lifelong obnoxious friend for a while. You really can watch or go to that sport you hate and learn the lingo and discuss how good or bad the game was. You can learn to play that sport he is into. And you really can learn to at least like, maybe even love some of his family! Plan, together, which Holidays you will spend with which family a head of time, and inform the families of your plan, and ask them to be happy with it.
4. Plan your financial life together, no secret spending or splurging, no purchases without agreement .Allow each other your own spending money, within your budget. Talk about your money situation with patience, calmly, and often. Compromise; give in once in a while, with love and humor. Do not put each other at risk financially. Tie all these communication tips together with love, humor, respect, and honesty.
5. Nagging accomplishes nothing, except a deaf ear to your needs. Tell him exactly what you are trying to accomplish. i.e.: the water bill will be astronomical, if he does not fix that drip. "Honey, I worry someone could get hurt if you do not fix that front step, please". Worse comes to worse hire someone to do it and tell your man you did not want him to be overworked, or some other considerate reason to hire someone. Find a humorous way to get him to do what you need to be done, or, if not important, let it go, and move on.
6. So, he is a klutz, or he's not always considerate, or his jokes are not funny. Maybe he is not always romantic when you make love. Change him with love and example, not with put downs, insults, or cutting remarks to him or to other people. She, who lives with a harsh tongue, loves by the sword, and kills love with that same sword. Try loving rewards for the good things and gentle reproofs of the bad, and offer alternatives to things you do not like.
7. Pouting to get your way or to show how put upon and hurt you are, only drives men away. They do not understand the emotion, how to react to it, so they usually run from it or react by defensively starting an argument no one will win. Instead of pouting, even when it feels so good to show your hurt feelings, refer to rules 1 through 4.
Communicate. State your case and what you want from him to make you feel better!
8. With the new age "Let it all hangout" everybody knows everything about a women's cycles, and women are glad to share their misery with anyone and everyone! We have all gone though this (Us women, I mean), so keep it to yourself, take a Midol or whatever, and try to act human, even if it does hurt and you do feel grumpy, smile, grin and hide it. Trust me, your man knows when you are suffering your "monthlies" and he will be more considerate when he realizes you are trying to grin and bear it, instead of using him as an emotional punching bag.
9. "Girl Talk" should not include put downs or complaints about your man. If you have a real problem, or need advise with a man problem, only discuss it with a trusted confidant or respected family member and only if absolutely necessary to your well being and peace of mind and keep it between just the two of you. Get professional help if necessary. Never disclose your most intimate relationship wants with disrespect to your mate or yourself. Brag how romantic your intimate life is, how satisfying your love life is. Talk only about the good points, and leave the bad or embarrassing things off the conversion table. How you speak of things and what you speak of usually govern your attitudes and your life, so keep it upbeat and complimentary. Never discuss these things with your children; these things are man and woman affairs only. Never put your children, your family or your friends in a position where they have to take sides! Bad news! It will come back to bite you. Human nature is not prone to keeping ones mouth shut. What you say will almost always get back to your mate, and hurt him.
10. In today's busy society, jobs, children, and outside activities, take away our attention too much. The most important person in your live should be your man. He should be center stage in your life. This will also lead to you being his central focus. Children's needs often have to be taken care of first, but that doe not mean all of their existence should push your man to the rear. Jobs and careers take much time, but there are always ways to make time and space for your man. Make it a priority to find ways and means to make him feel his importance in your life. It might just be a passing caress, making his favorite pie when you are really tired, a quick massage or back rub, bringing him a special snack, giving up your movie to watch "the game" with him. Learn to work on the car, boat, or plane, motorcycle or whatever, with him. Let him have the card game at your house all the time. Whatever special little things turn him on. Just listening to his day, or his frustrations, and his successes Sending the kids to the grandparents or play date for some alone time with him. Whatever it takes. Just a little effort will pay dividend.
11. When home for the day, comb your hair, put a little light make-up on, over and above your regular hygiene routine (It only takes 5 minutes),Throw away the grungy house wear, make the lounge suit or the sweat suit at least interesting and neat. Always dress for dinner, clean neat clothes, they can be casual, but presentable. Save the granny flannel nightgown for a comfort outfit when you are really sick, or experiencing you’re monthly. Wear comfortable attractive nightwear and robes, no scruffy dirty stinky slippers, thongs or sneakers, keep ‘em clean and neat. The same for your man, if he likes hanging out in his under shorts and shirt, get him some of the nice pj's that are made like under shorts and t shirts, but look like lounge wear. They are just as comfortable and sure look better. The children can have nice pj's to hang out in also.
12. Pick up after yourself, keep life simple, nice decorating, not a lot of geegaw's and dust collectors, especially if you work outside the home. Ask your mate to put his dirty towels, socks and underwear in the hamper. Reward him for being neat (although a lot of men are neater than us gals!) share the housework keep it simple, and routine so that you do not have to waste your spare time picking up, putting away and cleaning. Set a routine for cleaning and laundry, and or yard work. Make it fun; find shortcuts to cleaning (lots of shows on TV cover this subject). If there are children, they do great housework, if trained early on, and they cannot be beat as gofers. Use them, they appreciate being necessary to the running of the household, and they usually have more time than you do to get things done. Pay them for extra work done, but give them set chores they are responsible for just because they live there. Treat your man when he goes beyond the expected. Do something special for him in return.
13. Romance needs to be a key part of your endeavor to keeping your man (and you!) happy. Set aside at least one day week as date night. It can be a romantic dinner, a movie, or theater, bowling, a picnic, or just a DVD and popcorn at home alone. Be inventive, make it something different each time, make it romantic, sprinkle rose petals on the bedroom floor and the bed, and take an aromatherapy bubble bath together with champagne, candles, romantic music. Greet your man at the door in a sexy outfit or nightie and be seductive, make love in an unexpected place, spontaneously, again use your imagination, be inventive, surprise him, keep him off-keel, do the unexpected.) Go on a week end get away at least every two months; it does not have to be expensive, just romantic and special.
14. Same as 13 only spur of the moment, unplanned, just pick up and go do something special and romantic. If you instigate this, you will find your man will do his own surprises and spur of the moment romance.
15. And 16. Do your family and friends phone calls at times that do not intrude on your man's time. If people call at an inappropriate time, offer to call them back and get off the phone. No cell phone moments during your together time, turn them off! Computers are off limits during your private time together. Set the example for him, set a proper time for computer time and stick to it. The computer and phone are not going to leave home! Your mate might if you ignore him for an inanimate object.
16. See above, enough said.
17. A home cooked meal together is the oldest romantic tool ever. A good meal, even a very simple one, soup and sandwich, a nice salad, hot dog and beans, or steak and baked potato, they all work. The secret is the effort in preparing it and the way it is presented. You can have candles and hot dogs and soda as well as candles and prime rib. Atmosphere and mood setting says it all!
18. The "Family" goes with the territory. Always remember, your man has to deal with your family, so how you treat his will reflect on how he treats yours. The "mother-in-law" persona has been blown way out of perspective; most mates’ family members are likable or even lovable. If they are not, find their good points and work on those, find a common ground to get along on. Have patience with the really difficult ones, they will eventually leave and you can relax.
How you treat your mate's family will reflect how you treat your mate, so be nice even when difficult. Discuss any problems with your man and settle them, do not let them fester out of control. Let him handle the family problem for you. If he comes first, you will come first with him.
19. Do not reject is friends, accept them and incorporate them into your inner circle. Remember, he will have to accept your friends. You both will probably not really care for some of them, but now you are sharing the good with the bad, so find a way to deal with them with respect. If you really have problems with anyone discuss it with your man respectfully, and discover if there is grounds for concern, or if you are just being arbitrary. If there really is a problem, discuss it and let your man handle it. May be he will have to exclude that person or only see that friend on his own, not with you. Accept that and allow him to keep his friendships in tact. If you feel your man is in jeopardy because of this friend, state this to him and ask him his opinion, and to be cautious dealing with the friend and let him handle it. Expect the same respect from him towards your friends, at no time should either of you allow friend to effect your relationship with each other, that always comes first!
20. Sports and hobbies has pretty much been covered previously. Just remember to give it a really good honest try at incorporating his interests with yours. If you cannot do this, do not expect him to give them up, unless they are really excessive, then you need to discuss an adjustment to both your liking. Remember, you do things he will need to deal with also, so do as you want done for you!
21. Golden rule time! Only do what you want done for you!
To the men in the audience :
How to Keep a Woman Happy – How to Keep a Happy Woman!
Just change all the he's to she's, the him's to her's, and add "wo" before man and you have the recipe for a happy relationship :
Happy men make women happy, and happy women make men happy, so make each other very happy!
- Savanah Hindi ©