As women, girlfriends, wives, mothers, I think we love our independence and being able to say “I can take care of myself – I’ve got this” and really mean it. But deep down we also really like being taken care of too. We want to know that someone has our back, if we need the spider in the bathtub killed we can count on our significant other to save the day with a spatula and paper bag. We love the idea of someone else getting up from under the warm blankets during a movie that we picked to get the popcorn and drinks we asked for while staying cozy on the couch. We want to know that if something is wrong with our car or something needs to be repaired around the house we have someone we trust to make everything right again, even if they have no clue what they are doing. Admit it ladies, we love all of this and more. While we certainly know we can do all or most of these things ourselves it is nice to have someone else willing to do it.
The problem is as women we want to have all of that, in some ways we expect it, it’s a given that the man must always kill the spiders, that’s their job, and I know that because it was in the manual that came with him. But unfortunately we don’t always reciprocate in kind. We like to be pampered but don’t realize that men like it too. How nice would it be for us to volunteer to leave the comfort of the blankets and get the drinks and snacks instead or offer to rub their feet or neck after a long day at work once in a while. Be the ones to mow the lawn and shovel the snow. We need to be willing to step up and kill the metaphorical spider once in a while (not the actual ones because that’s just ick!) I think we forget that men need to be nurtured too.
If you’re a mother you probably feel like you have enough going on taking care of the kids, whether you are at home with them all day or work all day and start that job when you get home. But I think a lot of men pitch in just as much with the kids – but we don’t always give them credit for that. Obviously we all need to pitch in and do our share but I think the ooey gooey stuff doesn’t have to just be one sided. We expect flowers and candy on Valentines day – get him a six pack of his favorite beer, get him a gift certificate for a massage or tickets to a UFC fight, whatever he’s into. On your anniversary make sure he gets something he wants too. If it’s a significant one plan a surprise trip somewhere, it doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive if you don’t want, it can be as simple as a camping trip, holding hands next to the stream while you wait to catch your anniversary dinner.
My point is that although I believe most men will never admit it, because how “manly” would that be, they want to be pampered too sometimes, just in their own way. Our daily lives can be so mundane, our relationships get stale, we forget to remind the other person just how much we love and appreciate them and that can lead to ruined relationships. Those gestures don’t have to be big, getting me a blanket just because I look cold, running to help me with the groceries as I try to carry all ten bags in at once, bringing me tea when I am sick with a cold, watching a show on tv with me that you hate just to be able sit next to me for a while – and this goes both ways.
I would imagine no matter what, we will still be the receivers of most of the foot rubs and chocolates, but we musn’t forget to give men a shout out once in a while and let them know they deserve chocolate too.