What Women (and Men) Need in Relationships

Women are, in contrast to men, stronger, more complex, deeper, live longer, and generally have about 100,000 more sensory nerve endings in their skin than do men. What do these marked differences between the sexes mean for a relationship’s  stability and longevity?

To ask one single man to fulfill all the facets of a woman is the beginning of trouble. For the man to have that demand placed on him, tacitly or overtly, is a burden on him. When the demand is not answered,  the template is laid down for conflict and struggle between them. The unmet needs create frustration and anger for her. Needless to say, he becomes resentful and the cold distancing sets in. They each begin to find their satisfactions elsewhere: the bar, sports, children, careers, and outside affairs.

The remedy: a woman needs a number of platonic male friends who satisfy those needs not met by her significant other, be they artistic, intellective, humor, or whatever else he can’t provide. He’ll understand as long as they are not sexual. Women know how to make platonic friends and your beloved will understand if he’s mature and will actually feel relieved.

A man requires a woman to make time for him, care for him as he is more fragile than a woman is inclined to think. He requires encouragement and support, a calming voice, and reassurance. It helps when she joins in favorite pursuits, or at least shows interest. She needs to let him feel free – to carry out his pursuits and interests “while not leaving her high and dry in activities that appear to be drudgery.”

Bottom line for all couples, straight, gay, and otherwise: Preserve the freedom of the other and maintain faithfulness to each other. Keep the relationship fresh by spending some extended time together sans children, cell phones, and work demands.

If you’re not sure about the relationship, here’s a short imagery exercise: imagine yourself at 75 or so, sitting on your porch, veranda, or couch. Look around to see who is next to you. Pay attention to that image, it holds a basketful of information.

Now it’s Valentine’s Day. Here’s an activity. Write a love letter to your beloved and pour you heart out to him or her. You don’t have to mail it. Keep it next to your heart for three days then put it away.


Love and blessings,

Doctor Jerry.