While talking about sensuality and sexuality and how the mind and spirit play such a vital part in a woman’s responsiveness and happiness I mentioned that I would do a separate post on the things a woman needs in her life. These are the environmental conditions or emotional needs that a woman has. For simplicity sake I will write the things that I know I personally need. Most of them are also wants or needs expressed by women I know or communicate with and often I find them in various books on women and relationships as well. This confirms for me that while every woman is different they are basically universal desires of women. Please let me know if you feel I have missed something that as a woman you feel is important and don’t be afraid to say something if I’ve listed something that doesn’t remotely relate to you either.
I know that men also have needs that affect their happiness, well being etc. Validation, feeling as though their partner has faith in them, and so on. I’m not ignoring that men have their own set of needs and conditions, but this is a post about women, so it will focus only on women.
1) A woman wants to feel love. Where a man often places high importance on receiving respect, a woman places more emphasis on feeling love. She gives love to her husband, her children, family and friends. Most women seem to have an abundance of love to give. She enjoys the feelings of connection and of being needed but at the top of the list is the desire to “feel” the love of her husband or partner. To feel as though he knows who she really is. Not just the image of her or the roles she plays but that he knows her heart. He cares about her dreams and desires, he knows her fears and her strengths and loves her for things that are uniquely her. She wants to believe that he wants and he chooses to be with her more than any other person. That he will forsake all others because he loves her THAT MUCH. It is that sacred level of bond that she longs for. The belief that they are united as a team, unshakable. She and he together to face the world. She has his back and he has hers. This is one of the reasons that infidelity shakes a woman to her core so violently. When her partner makes a decision to pursue and experience someone else, her entire understanding of herself comes under question. Even when she understands her own worth. Even when she understands that her partner is responsible for his poor choices and his hurtful actions, she can not help but feel shattered and abandoned by the betrayal.
2) A woman wants to feel beautiful. Women are realistic about their beauty. In fact, more women fail to believe their own beauty than embrace it. Women are bombarded hundreds of times a day by media images, a youth oriented culture, pornography, and the competition of more needy women who will cut them down in order to feel even slightly more attractive than they do. That is not to say all or even most women are out to undercut their sisters but it’s a reality that there are a lot of insecure women who feel driven to obsession by the need to feel attractive and special and these are the women who either consciously or unconsciously will delight in reminding us of our flaws or who go to extremes to flaunt their assets as a way to feel like they are “more” than the rest of us. The media sells us a lie. When already beautiful women are airbrushed and photo-shopped to unreal proportions, how can any of us hope to measure up. Search the Internet for celebrities without make-up and you will see beautiful women that we think have been caught looking horrible. We are so use to the unreality they sell that to catch them in a natural state leaves them “lacking”. These are women with personal trainers and dietitians who drive them and coach them daily and monitor their diets, access to cosmetic surgeons who keep them nipped and tucked and liposucked. Financial means to spend thousands on high end facial care and cosmetics that help control aging and hide flaws. Catch them without their make-up and they are suddenly unattractive in our eyes. How can the average woman measure up to those kinds of standards that her man has bought into? The average woman understands that she needs knee caps to walk. They may be computer enhanced and removed for photo shoots but no human woman walks around without them. It is a ludicrous business this business of selling beauty. No, the average woman understands she will never be those things. That does not erase our need to feel beautiful for who we are. If we are not model perfect we hope that at the very least our partners find us irresistibly beautiful for our sexy eyes, easy smiles, the way the hair falls across our face, our laugh, the curve of our hips, our dimples or freckles, the sound of our voice, and our personality. Every woman has beauty in her. She wants to believe that her partner can see it.
3) Most women want mental stimulation. We want to learn knew things, experience the world around us, expand our horizons and grow. A woman is an ever changing landscape. If you place a woman in a rut of a routine, she will stagnate and fade. She needs vibrancy. Like men, she craves variety. Variety of people, scenery, activities, foods etc. She wants to talk about things that matter in the world, make her think or make her wonder. She doesn’t want to be talked down to, or to listen to the same old stories over and over again. She often wants to talk more than her partner does. This is part of her need for mental stimulation. She doesn’t want to make small talk all the time. She doesn’t want to only hear your daily complaints or rants. She wants to discuss matters of importance or interest going on in your lives or in the world around you. She wants to feel that while she is ever changing and redefining herself that her partner is also interested in growth and experience and in sharing those things with her. She wants a partner eager to try new things, to dance without insecurities, to try new foods, listen to new music, read new books. I think some men have the misconception that men are more worldly and more interested in the world around them. This simply is not always true. I also think that some men fill these needs outside of their partner with co-workers and associates and their comrades. In some cases they “assume” their women don’t have these needs and find it in other women who they perceive to be more cultured, or adventurous.
4) A woman wants romance. Not Surprisingly, many women don’t want the cliche romance of chocolate and flowers twice a year on Valentines day and their anniversary. Women want romance daily! They want to live in a state of romance. Not a perfect state. Not a Harlequin romance. But a state of affection. One that makes them feel like they matter. They are appreciated. They are cherished by someone who doesn’t take them for granted and doesn’t want to lose them to someone else. What does this kind of romance mean? It means her partner makes it a habit to speak to her with respect and caring and occasionally he speaks to her in that sweet soothing tone of a man trying to woo a woman, or playfully as a man flirting with a woman he desires. That he puts her needs equal to his own. He doesn’t always take first, sometimes he gives first. He kisses her hello and good-bye. He kisses her deeply for the sake of kissing. I read a blog the the other night where the woman was wistfully recalling the days of making out. Since when does any kiss that last more than three seconds mean sex in the next five minutes she asks? I think this is common. Kissing gives way to mere pecks and anything more means immediate sex. Why not try a spontaneous make out session on the couch without asking for sex to follow? Believe me, the less you try to turn it into sex, the more frequently she will arrive at the desire to suggest sex herself. It’s about balance. Sometimes kissing for the sake of kissing alone can be very erotic!!! It’s something she will remember and something that she will recall and use when she is building desire for sex another time. Especially if her partner is a good kisser. oooooo la la.
What else makes a man romantic? He sometimes cuddles with her when they watch a movie, he works beside her as they cook dinner or he tells her to set and relax as he clears the table. He puts the kids to bed from time to time. He gives her a wink every now and then. He rubs her neck and gives her regular massages. Not massages that turn to groping and sexual advance but massages that say I love your body, and I want to nourish it and revive it as thanks for all you do for me and others. I can’t stress this enough. A woman understands the male need for sex. But until men can appreciate and nurture our bodies and our senses, without the need for immediate gratification or reciprocal sex, we will forever subconsciously guard our bodies out the very human need to have some degree of control over our own bodies and personal space.
Why is it that so many men feel they have the right to enter our space and grope, pull and prod at our bodies? Why do they reach out immediately and grope our breasts and pull at our nipples or shove their hands down the back of our pants or up our skirts, when all we wanted to do was take a moment to acknowledge them or appreciate them and give them a simple hug and kiss? Why is it that they feel no need to ease into it? I wish that someone could help me understand why it is so hard for a man to understand the dance of pursuit and our need to warm to them, open ourselves to them, before they violate such intimate boundaries of self. Good grief, I of all people LOVE SEX and wild passion, but that lack of pursuit and the disregard for whether I’m in the moment or not, gets old. Fast. If a man simply can not control these impulses at the very very least could he just learn to sense when it is effective and when it’s not?
I know that was a bit of a rant, but truly, I do wish men could understand how much this is damaging their sex lives and how much their women withdraw from them because of this behavior. Women who long for more intimacy and much more frequent sex but simply can not get themselves into the right relaxed, sensual state because their sexual energy is constantly being thwarted by these mostly selfish aggressions by their partner. To a woman’s heart (and her errogenous zones) it’s just another sign of entitlement and lack of respect from her partner. And it feels to us to be symbolic of weakness. It’s a sort of invasion of personal boundaries when a man is unable to give his partner a relaxing back rub without the need to be groping and rubbing between her legs 4 minutes into it because of his inability to endure his own arousal.
5) Which brings us to strength and integrity. A woman desires strength. A woman can be incredibly strong. Statistically we have higher pain tolerances than men and we can endure stress and conflict much better with much less support than men usually require. But we also admire and respect the strength of men. Both physically and emotionally. We want an equal partner. Sometimes we will take the lead as the strong one but our hope is that our partner will just as often take the lead as the person in control and be the rock we are able to lean on. We want a man who has power over his impulses and base desires. We want a man with self control over his anger. A man we can believe in as stable, reliable or dependable. We want to trust in his integrity and his morals and values. We want to believe that he will not make choices or decisions that put us, our family or our relationship in jeopardy. That as an equal part of our team he is concerned with his own health, our health, our financial health, and our future security. A woman can be strong in so many ways, and spends much of her time playing this role of organizer, coordinator, project manager, nurturer, councilor. She craves moments when she can look to her partner and draw energy from his strength, comfort in his stability and see him as a force of security and protection before she rises the next day to do it all over again.
When all of these things are present in sufficient balance to the chaos of life, a woman has a sense of well being. She can maintain her energy levels and continue to give endlessly. She can set aside her roles and duties and let her hair down and relish in being a woman. Balance is vital to the emotional and spiritual well being of a woman. She can be the equilibrium in the world around her for only so long, thus her deepest desires are for that solid sacred bond that allows her to believe that someone stands beside her with a loving and grateful heart, ready to catch her if she should lose her balance.