In part one we looked at what seems to be the blueprint from God on roles when relating to our better half. We are now going to look at the aspect of “loving” a man.
To ensure that these were not just my thoughts I decided to do a small survey comprising of about 60 males in their 20’s and 30’s from South Africa, Zimbabwe and Candada. Here are the questions from the survey which we will expound below:
- What do you value the most in a relationship?
- What do you like the most in a relationship?
- What do you detest the most in a relationship?
What Men Value The Most In A Relationship
As covered earlier, possibly the single most important element in a relationship with any man is respect. In the survey there were no options to choose from yet 35% of men wrote the word “respect” for the question above.
So what is respect and how can you show it?
Respect can be defined as due regard for a person’s position or abilities. In this context I want to define it as recognition and conduct. What you think of your man is shown in how you recognise him and how you conduct yourself.
Recognition is mostly shown in two ways :-
– decision-making and;
– how you address him.
Consider the following two statements which illustrate a decision making process:
- “Bbe my friends are planning a ladies night/weekend on xx and I would like to go. Is that fine by you?”
- “Bbe on xx I’m going with my friends for a ladies night/weekend. Oh I meant to tell you but I didn’t get around to it…”
The latter statement shows the decision making process which does not recognise your partner. Although it may seem like a small thing, it actually creates the impression that you do as you please without recognising the involvement of your man in your life which is disrespectful. This can lead to a lack of transparency and other trust issues in the relationship.
“What you think of your man is shown in how you recognize him and how you conduct yourself.” – Simon Bwerinofa
Addressing your man: It’s often the simple things that count e.g a simple title like “My King” has an impact both on a conscious and subconscious level to a man. The statement not only shows that you recognise your man as the highest authority in your kingdom (you guys’ world) but it also acknowledges that you deem him fit for the title. Am I pushing it?? I don’t think so, it is actually part of the blueprint from God and it’s entwined in our culture.
1 Peter 3 vs 5 For in this manner (inward and not outward adornment), in former times (since back then), the holy women who trusted in God (women of the faith) also adorned themselves (inward adornment spoken of in previous verses), being submissive to their own husbands (this is how they adorned themselves inwardly), 6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord (there it is, she set the tone back then by calling her man “lord” or if you would like in this modern era “king”), whose daughters you are if you do good (straightforward) and are not afraid with any terror.”
Here in Africa, we have heard of the same principle since back then. In my language, Shona, it is common to hear wives responding to their husbands with the words “Shewe / Ishewe” (mostly in the rural areas) which translates to “my king”. In some cases it’s the totem or clan name that is used even amongst men themselves. “Mhofu” “Mugombi” etc…same principle. It’s biblical and it’s cultural – it works. Use it from time to time.
Lastly and perhaps the biggest show of respect is in response to conflict. All healthy relationships brush against each other from time to time. That’s normal and I dare say necessary. But the magic is in how you handle the conflict during and after. This is where the heart of true respect lies.
It has the power to nullify or amplify whatever else you would have done when things were normal. A tip that does the trick is to always go with humility. If your mouth got you into trouble it is going to take your mouth to undo the mess – don’t let your mouth be too proud to fix things. If you can’t speak due to shame etc and you are one of those people that apologise by cooking, buying a gift etc then just be sure your man knows that’s how you apologise.
Loyalty (18%) & Trust (14%)
While respect deals with recognition and conduct, Loyalty and Trust deal with believing in a person. It is a strong feeling of support or allegiance. For me personally, this is a deal breaker. I cannot be involved with a person who doesn’t believe in me (relationship-wise). If a woman doubts my ability and potential to be a “MAN” in the very essence of the word then I have no business staying in that relationship.
It’s often an issue of being myopic – looking at the now and not the future or potential of a person. I strongly believe that on these 2 principles lies the success of any man. When they say “behind every successful man is a woman” it is probably because a woman has empowered her man through these principles. Any man that receives genuine support and trust from his partner has a high chance of reaching his potential. Ever noticed how when people get married things seem to just start going their way?? I believe it’s also partly because of this.
So how do you show loyalty and trust?
- Believe in him (pray for him, SUPPORT him, encourage him, take his word as is)
- Hold him accountable (in the plans he sets out)
- Do not compare him to other men directly or indirectly – this is both disrespectful and cheap.
- Stick with him when things are tough (very tough times will come – it’s a certainty)
There may be other points with regards to being faithful etc which may also fall under loyalty and trust as well as respect but in general when a man knows his woman is FOR him, he can be unstoppable.
“A great relationship happens when two people who truly understand each other and love each other for who they are, come together and create something stronger than either of them could be on their own.” – Unknown
Synergy is basically working together to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of your separate effects. In relationship terms, this can be best described using the common phrase “what are you bringing to the table”. God did not intend for any woman to be a parasite (a living organism which depends on another living organism for its existence). NO, it’s a matter of growth and effort.
The satisfaction of attempting and achieving. The Proverbs 31 woman best describes this principle. She is hardworking; she is a business woman; she takes care of the household affairs and so on. The idea of being totally dependent on a man is both dangerous and crippling. Some people confuse it with submission and think that when you submit then you chill and get pampered. No, you are part of the body and the whole body “works”.
SO, what you can bring to the table is “effort, a willingness to work and support for each other”. You must have a personal drive to improve something or somewhere. Commit to continued growth and support of your partner.
Commitment encompasses everything we have been talking about on the question of what men value the most in a relationship. It is actually a principle. Commitment says no matter what, I will respect, I will be loyal, I will trust and I will work with my man. When one is committed it’s as though they have arrived on an island of love and they burnt the boat that brought them there and as such there is no going back.
It is a quality, if possessed, which may cause a man to turn his back on his best friends for his woman…the kind from the song “When a man loves a woman”. I have seen grown men in tears, appreciating their wives who have this rare heavenly principle built in their characters. I have personally experienced both a committed and an uncommitted relationship. In the latter I discovered later that my gf then had one foot in love and another in fear (of the unknown – that “what if?” fear) and so each time we experienced storms it was rough because she was caught up in two minds. You have to be convinced about him. You can’t “play it safe” – either you are in or not. If not, then it’s best not to waste each other’s time.
“When one is committed it’s as though they have arrived on an island of love and they burnt the boat that brought them there and as such there is no going back.” – Simon Bwerinofa
What Men Like The Most In Relationships
The verse goes, “It is not good that a man should be alone”. Spoken by none other than God Himself. From there we can derive that men want companionship and so in the survey 90% of men wrote companionship as the answer to the above question.
Inability to create quality time for your man is starving him of a basic need and possibly creating a void another woman may fill :). So what is quality time then? The answer is probably found in the other 10% of responses to the question. These were (written as is) intimacy, sex, openness, vulnerability, freedom with each other, togetherness, growth and appreciation.
It all makes sense because if men are the ones to Love, then since love is other-centered and not self-centered we yearn to express our love to our partners.
What Men Dislike The Most In A Relationship
Most answers given here were the opposite of what men value most. Answers were in 4 main categories:
- Dishonesty (lies, pretence, manipulation) – it’s disrespectful and shows lack of trust
- Dependency (attention leech, nagging, feeling trapped, unrealistic expectations)
- Selfishness (cheating, unfaithfulness) – you think only about yourself and what YOU want
- Bad communication (argumentative behaviour, unsaid expectations, hints, complainer)
Lower your expectations and refrain from hints/riddles. We are wired differently and we do not interpret things the same way. In terms of attitude when being corrected, being helped and being instructed, don’t say things like “I know” (with an attitude), “you are not my father”, or “you are also not perfect”.
Lack of transparency / vulnerability suffocates the relationship and on the contrary the more vulnerable you become in a relationship with the right person, the more you become loveable.
Well done for making it this far, we are finally done. So let me say this real quick:
“Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” – Brene Brown
In most cases, people (men included) have developed a normalcy around a nasty situation. We grow up in broken families and/or messed up environments which alter our perspective on life and relations. And so because we don’t know better we don’t do better. We continue to only exercise that which we were/are exposed to and the cycle continues. It’s one of the reasons why abuse, disrespect and all these things often continue – its “normal” or “its life”.
I remember I decided in one of my previous relationships to Love as Christ loved to the best of my ability. In the ups and downs of the relationship, I was consistent in showing love and care. Although It was not easy, I eventually got used to it. One of the key revelations I got is that kind of love is not really the love that people want because they have not experienced it especially in their family. It appeared as a weakness in some instances and it certainly wasn’t comfortable in other areas. However ultimately I began to see the fruits.
This kind of love (blueprint) is like a light that exposes a person – both the recipient and the giver. In this case the recipient eventually broke down and in that shattered state, surrounded by lots of questions she realised her deeper flaws and issues. Now you want to know what happened after but that’s not the point here.. Stay with me.:)
The point is you have to try the blueprint from God though it sounds ridiculous. It will definitely be insightful and it may be the light for someone. If you are not married yet and you are dating then as they say practice makes perfect. Exercise it in principle otherwise you are probably exercising not being submissive which can be a problem when you get married. If the relationship fails then you would have either transformed someone or been transformed yourself by the process. The world is counting on men and women on this front to restore what once was.
Let love be love and enjoy. 🙂
Simon Bwerinofa is a young, single and patriotic African who loves God. He is gifted in “making things happen”, loves the process of creating something from nothing or simply solving problems using technology. He has a passion to inspire people to live positive lives and reach their potential. A musician, photographer, athlete and tech entrepreneur.
Once again, thank you Simon for these insights into doing relationships with men. It’s been refreshing to have a male voice on our platform. The ladies have definitely indicated how beneficial it is to hear from our brothers cause we can mislead one another on topics such as these.
Please go ahead and share your thoughts or questions on the post so we can learn together.
Thank you as always for stopping by our corner of the universe 🙂