Women, Tell Your Men These Things
What Women Want is the name of a terrible movie starring Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt. It’s also a question that men have been asking for generations. But what about men? Although men have trouble expressing their feelings and communicating their needs, men have very real needs from their partners.
Men need to feel valued and appreciated. Men need to feel attractive. And men need to feel emotionally safe.
Make your man feel this way and watch the positive impact it has on him. Here are some things to tell him regularly that will help strengthen your relationship.
Men need to feel emotionally safe. Tell him he can open up to you about his feelings
Men grow up being told they have to act a certain way to be a real man. One lie men are told is they’re supposed to keep their emotions to themselves. So men go about their lives keeping their pain and hurt a secret, thinking this is what they’re supposed to do. When these feelings are held in for too long, they eventually have to come out. And often it comes out in the form of anger, or aggression, or substance abuse.
Men need to share their emotions, just like women. Men crave emotional safety from their partners, but they may not know how to ask for it. Remind your man that he can open up to you about his feelings. And then remind him again. Most men have spent decades being told to not share their emotions, so changing this won’t be easy. But tell him often that you love him, and that you’re here to listen to him, no matter what it is.
Men need to feel attractive. Tell your man he’s handsome.
It’s nice when you’ve gotten all dressed up and you get compliments about how nice you look. Men also need to hear this. Don’t just let him know that he looks sharp in a tuxedo, or that he looks good in a suit. A tuxedo and a suit are things he can purchase and can control.
He needs to hear that what shows up every day in front of the mirror and in front of you is attractive. Next time you’re on the couch, or curled up in bed, or brushing your teeth together, lean in, give him a kiss on the cheek, and tell him how handsome he is.
He may love hearing you say this. He may love it and pretend he doesn’t. But keep telling him this and it will make his light shine brighter and brighter.
Men need to feel that they have purpose and can provide. Tell him you appreciate him.
Men need to feel appreciated. It helps them feel validated, and gives them purpose and value. The next time your man helps plan a trip, or fixes something in the house, or goes first into a dark room, or makes you dinner — tell him how much you appreciate him doing those things.
When he surprises you and does something without being asked, acknowledge that. When he shows signs of working on his communication, or stopping a bad habit, or being better about asking about your needs, let him know you appreciate he’s working on himself, and working on the relationship. Even if he says he doesn’t need praise or to be thanked, do it anyway.
Even if you don’t need help with something, ask him for help. His face will light up and deep inside, his fire will burn a little brighter. Let him be the hero for you he’s always wanted to be. Deep down, all men have a little Captain America in them.
Even though men have trouble articulating what they need from their partner, their needs are real. Men need to feel they have valued and are appreciated. Men need to feel attractive. And men need to feel emotionally safe. Make your man feel this way and watch the positive impact it has on him.