Turn Your Significant Other Into Your Ideal Mate
There has been a question posed recently that has been asked by men, and women, for quite some time. Evidently, there has not been a satisfactory answer thus the reason the question still exists. What I am referencing here is why women find the need to change their men. While this is stereotyping at it's finest, it is a stereotype for a reason.
As a young girl entering into the confusing world of hormones and relationships, I turned to the wide array of teen magazines out on the market. Some girls had older sisters or cousins to turn to, others had understanding mothers. Not me, I was an only child, no older cousins nearby, and my mother panicked when I brought up boys. Not only was I not allowed to date, I was not allowed to think of boys. My mother did not trust herself enough to believe that she taught me to not be as rebellious and experimental as she was. Getting that out of the way, the magazines did a terrible job of teaching young ladies how they should behave in their relationships.
There were countless articles aimed at teaching us how to use subtlety and feminine guiles to get the man in our lives to do pretty much whatever we wanted. By using a combination of reverse phsycology and withholding 'favors' we are told that we can have any man panting at our feet. You do not like the way he dresses? Tell him how you saw this shirt at the store and thought about how sexy he would look in it. Don't like how he belches after a meal? Tell him you won't kiss him after he does that. Want to get him to stop smoking? Give him something else to do with his hands and mouth. Really? This is what a young girl needs to know.
It goes the other way, too. In those same magazines, there are numerous quizzes detailing how to know if a guy is into you or if your specific guy loves you. On just about every one of those lists, the top one went something like this-you know your guy loves you if he sees you in the morning without your makeup on and he still thinks you are beautiful. This was about the time that I decided to live sans makeup and simply be Au natural. I figured that if this was the way it was supposed to be, I did not like it. I wanted there to be no surprises for any future men in my life. They were going to get what they saw and if they did not like that, then there was no moving on.
That is also how I have approached the opposite sex. I wanted a man who was comfortable in his skin, knew who he was, what he wanted out of life, and was looking for the same in a woman. Many heartbreaks later, I have learned that confidence can be faked and men, like women, lie. Many nights were spent with girl friends griping about how this guy deceived us or how that guy was great but...and we would go on about how he would have been perfect if only fill in the blank. Then it hit me, why were we hung up on finding that almost perfect guy?
The answer turned out to be exceedingly simple. That is what we were taught to do. This is not a phenomenon exclusive to the most recent generations, either. I have found readings from my great grandmother's generation teaching women how to be the perfect wife. Among the list of attributes that a woman was supposed to attain was the ability to 'train' our husbands. Men, forgive me, but you have not been granted a history of being the all-knowing, ever capable, strong, supportive gender that you would have yourselves believe. Just as you are talking to your buddies about how your poor, fragile wife does not have the brains or brawn to tackle difficult concepts, we have been talking to our girlfriends about your failings.
As women, we are taught to serve you, support you, guide you into becoming the successful pillar of society that your mother pointed you towards. No matter how physically attractively we find you to be, no matter how much we get along with you, you simply must be tweaked, just a little bit. Despite all the stories of finding our ideal knight in shining armour riding up to us on a white horse to carry us off to a life of love and luxury, we are told that it really is a fairy tale and it will not happen. We are told there is no perfect man, no soul mate. We are told, then, that we must make him. We are to take the closest thing we can find to the guy we want, and we must then mold him into our dream guy.
Just so that we are clear, we, as young ladies, are also told that we are not good enough, either. We are taught that no man will want us for who we are but who he perceives you to be. We must discover what kind of woman he wants and become her if we are to catch his singular attention. Once that has been established, it's time to roll up our sleeves and get to work! Obviously, this is really no way to set about trying to establish a strong, healthy relationship. There needs to be a shift in how we approach ourselves and others and certainly how we view the ideal partner. I do not know if this is the answer you gentlemen were looking for, but it is the best that I can do.
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