Ladies, this one is for us.
You know when you like a guy — like, REALLY like him — so much you’re willing to let him get away with ‘bad behavior’, maybe treat you less than you hoped for? Maybe you jump at his last-minute invitations for any chance to hang out with him, or excuse him when he neglects to call when promised, or turn a blind eye to his over-drinking/ over-spending/ over-anything?
Boy do I know!
A great girl friend of mine was dealing with her ex recently who was trying to win her heart again. He told her wonderful, sweet things about how he’d wait for and work hard for her. It all sounded so wonderful.
But I just wasn’t sure. My gut told me otherwise, and I didn’t know why? So we had a “girl talk” and broke it down. [Thank God for the girl talk! How many a woman has been spared by the advice and counsel of her friends?] :)
Our conversation sparked great ideas, ones that all us women need to hear, so now I’m sharing them with you.
But girls, before reading further, know my heart is for every woman to have great relationships and make the best decisions, not for ourselves only but for the people around us, too. I hope every woman finds a WONDERFUL man to share her life with, and I think God has one in store for everyone He’s prepared for marriage! It weighs heavily on me when girls struggle, wanting to find a true love who seems non-existent. I’ve been there and it’s tough.
What us ladies must realize is that, yes, God is in control of our world, but we still have a choice and a say in the matter. Many a woman shoots herself in the foot, wasting time with the wrong type of men, and making choices that move her further away from the man she really wants. Our love lives are not all “up to fate” or God. You, my friend, have a weighty say in the matter. That was my message to my girl friend last week and now it’s my message to you.
In our conversation, I offered my friend practical advice from a girl who has been blessed beyond belief with a loving man. Do I deserve him? Hardly. But did I take certain steps to attract the type of man who would respect me, treat me better than “okay”, and value me? You better believe I did.
This advice works. It’s worked for me and plenty of ladies besides me. So hear me out and open yourself to perhaps a new perspective. I hope you’ll begin to expect the guy in your life to be a true man, instead of staying stuck in ’adultescence’ for years to come, and that you’ll begin to call out the best in him. What he may not know – and what I’ve just discovered — is that he secretly needs that from you.
Below is our heart-to-heart:
I was careful with my husband… I made him “work” for my heart, and he’s told me how much he treasures me because he had to put so much effort into it. I’ve learned through him and other men that men want to sacrifice for the right lady! If it comes easy, yes part of them likes that [the childish side of them], but deep-down they feel MANLY when they have to sacrifice / give up something for a woman. Not kidding, this is how men are hardwired! If you’re with a man who just wants whatever comes easiest, he is not a man, he’s a boy still and he’s NOT marriage material (yet!!) ;). To find a commitment-minded man, you as the woman must encourage him to commit in various “stages”. If he’s gun shy about it, he may not be ready 1) to settle down or 2) for you.
My friend said this Sunday night- that the guy in her life can’t be the right guy for her “because he has two kids”. Then she said, “Let’s be honest… for the right guy, that wouldn’t matter” (meaning he’s not it). Same with guys. They’ll commit regardless of obstacles if you’re the right girl and they’re ready. Us ladies need to stop making excuses for them and kick them to the curb!!! hahaha :)
With that said, regarding your situation, your man seems commitment-oriented! Woohoo! But he has to re-earn your trust. He’ll wait it out and stay by your side if it’s worth it to him. And he’ll treasure you and respect you more because you didn’t take crap from him! A woman can whip a man into shape easily by what she will and will not tolerate! I’ve let my husband know – without being a supreme diva about it – that for us to work well, I will not tolerate several things. He knows this and respects my desires. Likewise he has boundaries for me that I try to respect. Your “list” may differ, but the principle is the same: Your future man will jump through whatever hoops you put up (within reason haha) to win your heart!!!
I think you’ll get a wonderful man because you = AMAZING WOMAN but you can get less-than-ideal treatment even from the RIGHT man if you tolerate it. Set the bar and don’t be afraid to set it high! Men LOVE a woman who respects herself. It’s like a real man’s mating call haha!! TRUST ME. Don’t settle for less! And remember my fave line: “You catch what you bait for.”
When my friend confided that she wished someone would tell the guy in her life what she wanted, my response was:
Why don’t you tell him this yourself? No one told Brian what I wanted and needed in a man but me! Honest communication is the best place to start.
I so dearly desire to see my friends and other women have strong healthy relationships!! I think many ladies, myself included for the longest time, don’t realize they can make positive changes in their relationships to improve them! I want my girlfriends to know they don’t have to merely wait for “the right guy to come along” but that they can encourage men around them to “step up to the plate” and be men. Guys often need that encouragement/ push from their ladies to be the man they wanna be and that we need them to be.
I do that a lot. I think some knight in shining armor is going to come along and swoop me off my feet and keep living this fantasy instead of expecting the reality from who is around me! This really resonates with me Summ.
I want people’s relationships and lives to improve. But to have better lives and better relationships, we have to make tough choices sometimes (like refusing to enable addicts, for instance) for things to improve….and sometimes they get worse before they get better, which is not fun. I wish people would not take it as criticism or judgment. There are certain choices we can make that hurt us, and I try to discourage these and encourage good choices so people don’t experience what I did. Wish someone had coached me BEFORE my life took a nosedive!
Once my friend talked to her guy and told him what she wanted and needed in a relationship, he said he wasn’t ready :( While this was tough to hear, it’s a huge blessing because she doesn’t waste precious time with a man who’s not right for her. She has now — by being bold enough to tell him what she expects in her ideal relationship — freed up her heart for a better man to enter her life. So proud of her!!!!! This was my last response:
The man who you marry will be ready and will love you and not have huge issues. I’m SO GLAD you can break free and move forward now. That’s why I LOVE the DTR… it clarifies relationship expectations when you’re confused so you don’t waste time with someone who isn’t ready for what you are. I’ve used it too and saved myself lots of heartache! You are not dumb for having an open heart. That shows you’re in a place that he isn’t.
So sorry. But also happy you’re free from getting hurt further. See? Your gut instinct with him was spot-on. You were guarded for good reason. Us ladies need to follow our gut more often :)
I think you’re stronger than him, and every girl needs a man who’s stronger than she is. He’s got some work to do with himself before he’s ready to settle down.
Girls, I’m not advocating we be demanding divas, expecting a perfect man to open every door and roll out the red carpet. But please value yourself more and do not, as Scripture says, “Throw your pearls before swine.” Don’t do it! You are worth far more than pearls, and any man unwilling to wait for you is not right for you.
Walk away, don’t apologize for your standards, and wait for a man who treasures you. He won’t be perfect, but he will love you and respect you the way God created you to be. Don’t accept anything less than God’s best. He’s out there, and he wants to rise to the challenge of winning your heart one day and one sacrifice at a time — but he needs you to let him. Don’t accept a boy, otherwise he may have no reason to grow up and be a man.
Lastly, it’s important to mention that, yes, my husband is an incredible man, but I did not make him into the man he is today. With God’s help, he made the choice to step up to the plate, be a man, and win my heart the old-fashioned way. But you better believe my personal decisions weighed heavily into the health of our relationship and now our marriage.
It has NOT been an easy road. But trust me on this one, the harder the fight, the sweeter the victory, and the deeper the love can be.
I believe that if my dream came true, yours can too.