Relationships make the world go around. We love people and we hate them. We want to be around them and then we want to get away from them. We can’t live with them, and we can't live without them.
And nowhere is this more evident than when it comes to dating, courtship, long term and short term relationships, partners and spouses.
First I want to say that all relationships start off with excitement and dreams of living happily ever after, and yet a large percentage end up as a living hell. Many of us saw our parents arguing and fighting and we hated it.
We were sure that our relationship would be different. But once we got involved with someone for awhile--sure enough, soon we were arguing—and we are lucky if it was merely arguing. Sad to say the daily newspapers are full of stories about arguments that turn into violence or even murder.
Something is wrong. If love turns into hatred, then it wasn’t real love to start with. It proves that what most people think of as love is not really love at all.
Some relationships settle into long ones. Many appear happy and fulfilling on the surface. But the truth is that many are not. Something is still wrong. Each partner suffers--he in his way, and she in her way.
I remember when I was a boy, my mother had some good lady friends. I was surprised and shocked by what was said about their husbands. Each wife not only openly complained about and criticized her husband, but also stated that she was secretly unhappy and unfulfilled.
I was shocked because in private they seemed to have contempt for their husbands, and what was said in private was quite different than what was said when the husbands were present.
I also got to listen in to what the husbands said when, for example, the men would go fishing while the women did something else.
When I was with men, I heard a different story. The men were unaware of their wife’s secret unhappiness or of their wife’s secret contempt. The husbands thought that everything was basically okay with the marriage.
The men did admit that their wives never seemed to be satisfied. The wives always wanted something. They wanted him to lose weight, to stop smoking, get a better job (like some other friend’s husband had), or go to church more. The wife wanted him to improve or change in some way.
The wives, according to the husbands, were apparently never satisfied. They wanted a bigger house, more furniture, a vacation, or something. But when she got it, she was still not satisfied with it. Nor was she satisfied with any self improvement he made. She always found something to disapprove of. Yet the husbands were not aware of their wife’s secret unhappiness or that the wife was complaining about him behind his back.
The husband typically said that his wife was confusing, and he was at a loss as to what she wanted.
But like I said, for the most part, the men thought that the relationship was basically okay. Without trying to be rude, I must say (to use an old expression) the men were “fat, dumb and happy.” They did not suspect the deep unhappiness their wives were feeling.
Occasionally one of the husbands or wives would privately remark that they were staying together “for the sake of the kids.”
It seemed as though the wives were far unhappier with the husbands than vice versa. Somehow they wanted something from their husbands that they were not getting. The wives seemed to think that what was needed was better communication, intimacy and sharing that would make things right.
But their unhappiness and continued complaints no matter what their husband did proves that it was something deeper that they needed.
They could not put into words what they needed. But I can. And I will spell it out in this book.
Their husbands could not figure out what their partners wanted. They tried everything--from flowers to champagne and hot tubs for two—but nothing seemed to satisfy the wives.
I will tell you husbands later what your wives really need, so keep reading.
Roland Trujillo has been helping people with life and relationship issues for 25 years. He is the author of 18 books.