As divorce continues to rip our culture apart at its seems, Dennis Prager's column What Do Men Want? (which is the first of two columns he is writing.the next is on what women want.I'm anxious to see if Prager's managed to nail that one down!) does a great job of pointing out an important truth.
So often pop culture jokes about how men want one thing: sex. While no one can, or should, deny the sexual desire amongst men (or women for that matter), this isn't really a good answer to the question. Men can find cheap sex virtually everywhere they turn, but it doesn't bring them happiness or contentment. So what do they want?
Prager's insightful comments:
What does a man most want? Answer: He most wants to be admired by the woman he loves.
One proof is that the most devastating thing a woman can do to her man is to hold him in contempt. That is so devastating to a marriage that, over time, it is often more toxic than an affair. I am fairly certain that more marriages survive an affair, as difficult as that is, than contempt. Of course, this goes in both directions, but when a woman shows contempt toward her man, his very manhood is called into question.
Great stuff. Prager goes on to give a personal example of this truth that is both touching and instructive:
My father and mother were married 69 years. As my brother and I have heard countless times, "She put me on a pedestal" was the quality my father most often cited in describing what a wonderful wife my mother was. She admired him, and to him that was everything. On the other hand, in describing her love for my father over all those years, my mother never once said, "He put me on a pedestal" (despite the fact that he constantly praised her). Rather, she always spoke of what a "great man" he was, how "brilliant," etc. Of course, this is just one example, but I think it applies to the majority of men and women.
I know watching my Grandma and Grandpa Heck before Grandpa died when I was a freshman in high school, this was something I always noticed. Grandpa cherished Grandma, and Grandma was just in awe of how great Grandpa was. It worked. It was complimentary. It was how it was intended to be.
So what of pop culture's analysis that men just want sex? They've got it partly right:
So, although the Internet jokes are right about men wanting sex, it isn't sex men most want from their woman. They want to be admired ? and sex is one manifestation of a woman's admiration for her man. When a man is regularly denied sex, in his eyes that means that his wife does not hold him in high esteem. Worse, he actually feels humiliated as a man. That, not the sex per se, is why regular denial devastates a man.
Women, honor your man. Men, be honorable. It's a simple formula, but one that is very difficult to attain in this culture. We should make every effort to attain it though.because the results speak for themselves.