By Lynn Seiser
To Me/Men, Women areÖ
As a male author, a male psychotherapist, and just a male in general, when I am confronted with writing an article about womenís issues I always feel somewhat overwhelmed and certainly under qualified. The last several times, I have tried to balance the issue by writing about the politically incorrect topic of men. I guess it has been my way of attempting to find balance because there is no edition for menís issues. Do I write about what women tell me about how they see men, or worse, about how they see themselves?
Do I write about what men tell me about how they see women, or worse about how they see themselves? I often thought of writing an article, or book, about the rules that men and women appear to play by and how opposite and totally incompatible they really are. This is my dilemma as I sit pondering the topic of womenís issues. As a representative of the male species, perhaps I should take this opportunity to attempt to express the unexpressionable.
Women are workers. You work so hard to make everything right and seldom does it work out the way you want, yet you never give up trying. You hold the world in wonder and we wonder how you see it that way. You show your weaknesses and those become your strengths. You donít care about winning, because winning is just working it out. We want to work things out too. We just do it differently.
Women are open and optimistic. Even as you point out everything that is wrong with us and want to talk about it all night, you do it with the hope that everything will work out. It really is an expression of your love. No topic is off limits. No time is too inconvenient. There isnít an opportunity that goes by that you donít see some way of improving. As you openly talk about what could be better, it tells us you are not happy with how we are now.
We somehow feel inferior and that we have let you down. Society has taught us it is our job to fix the things we canít, provide for you the things we canít get, and protect you from danger when the danger is usually us. We hear you when you say you want open, sensitive men, but seldom do you select us if we are.
Women are mothers to us all and tend to see the magical and miracles in every moment. Sometimes it is hard for you to forget you are not our mothers and we have trouble forgetting we are not children. Instead of friends and equals, we regress to that old family parental dance. Instead of husband and wife, or father and mother, we too often become mother and child. I really donít need or want a mother. It implies I am a child and incapable or inadequate of taking care of myself.
We sometimes mistakenly treat you as children by taking a paternal fatherly role. We havenít learned yet to care as equals and share mutual support, recognizing we both need the love and support of each other. Love is the magic that produces miracles.
Women are emotional, enthusiastic, and most of the time, down right enjoyable. Your emotional expressions usually balance our over reliance on logic. You express what we have been taught not to feel, let alone express. You get enthusiastic and excited about little things that let you know we really do love and appreciate you. You want to laugh, but usually cry. We donít mean to make you cry. You have permission to express you emotions even if we have trouble seeing and hearing them. We would rather hear you laugh than cry. We want you to feel good about yourself. We want you to enjoy your life with us. We know you want the same for us.
Women are naturally nurturing. Your intentions are always positive. When asked if women are naughty or nice, you would get a contradictory and confusing message from men. We like you sometimes nice and sometimes naughty. Because we are often incongruent, we expect you to be as well. We know you want to help. We know that behind what we may call ďnaggingĒ is a natural nurturance and deep desire to negotiate the best for us all. We like your nurturance, even if we donít always know how to reciprocate in a way thatís acceptable. As you nurture us, you are aware that in our own way, we are nurturing you.
I once saw a book that was supposed to report everything than men knew about women. The pages were all blank. We often make the false assumption that we donít know each other and that there are more differences than similarities. Yet, we both just want to be accepted, appreciated, and loved for who we are. We tend to interpret everything the other does as having some negative intention or purpose. Yet, we both are just doing our best with our suffering and misperceptions to let your love in and to let our love out.
As the male of the species, we do know that it is love that is unexpressionable. Words can never express it, or how much we really do feel it for you. Love is what we all want and strive for. Perhaps with each otherís support and compassionate understanding, we can find it together.
Thanks for listening, for the opportunity to be of service, and for sharing the journey.
Lynn Seiser, Ph.D., MFT has offices in Long Beach, CA and can be contacted at (562) 799-1371 or at www.AikiSolutions.com .
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