We have been married for 7 years, 7 months and 13 days and I am still questioning what truly makes a marriage successful. Without doubt I can confirm that love, intimacy, trust, respect and friendship are key ingredients. But I am not convinced that on their own these factors could make a marriage work. My marriage has moved through several phases and both my husband and I have been through different stages when our love is like a rainy romantic night in a beachside villa in Portland, Jamaica to times when it is like a volcanic eruption in Indonesia. But I keep bouncing around in my mind trying to find that key to maintaining the villa-like aspects of our relationship. I know we are good friends. I know we respect each other tremendously. Without doubt we both love each other and are in love with each other. So this has led me to think about successful marriage ingredients given that I plan to grow old with my own personal skinny potbellied negro called SAR.
Sitting on the beach over the weekend brought it all home to me. It is amazing the things that gain clarity when the mind is in a state of nothingness. When the kids have no need for you and there are no chores to be done, meetings to attend, tv to watch or emails to respond to. Many may disagree and a while back I would have disagreed too but now it is pretty clear to me what makes a relationship last.
It is as simple as this: Men need to be treated as though they are special, in charge and lord of the manor. Women need to feel protected and fawned over.
I have finally faced the reality that I want my man to be a MAN. I am forever grateful to the women who fought for equality but in my relationship I want my husband to be the man and me the woman. There is no gray area. I do not want to be asked to light the charcoal grill (I will do it if I want to). I expect the man in the relationship to check that the doors are locked at nights (I will do it if I want to). I do not want to earn more than my man. I want him to put his foot down when I get too crazy and I want him to protect and shield me the way he would his baby girl. I expect flowers, candy, sweet poems and notes and the occasional foot rub and candle light dinner.
In exchange, and this is where the difficulty lies, I should feed his ego because that is the natural order of things. Thank heavens I am not married to an egotist or this would become even more difficult. I should be prepared to make him feel special in ways that matter to him. This is where many of us have been failing in our marriages. We have bought into the modern day diatribe that makes us expect our men to be men while we have lessened our responsibilities in return. Too often we have complained that we will not iron his shirt, he needs to make his own meals, etc. But the reality is that we are pushing to do less but wanting more.
Does this mean I will meet all his demands or should meet all his demands? No….what it means is that the same way I want to be made to feel like the woman in the relationship is the same way I need to make sure that I treat him like the man he is and the man I want.
For all the feminists and motivational junkies out there, let us call a truce today and please do not give me the spiel that I should not need someone else to make me feel like a woman. I am fine being the only woman to admit that from time to time I need those flowers, dinners and small gifts to make my womanhood blossom even more.
Until next time…………….One Love!!!!!!!