“My wife is so complicated and irrational – I could never figure her out!”
“My husband is so simplistic and childish – all he thinks about is conquering something and sex.”
True? False? On the surface, there is some truth to these statements. Men and women are certainly very different from each other, as different as Huck Finn and Cinderella. But when married people stop at this level of understanding, it makes them into 1 dimensional cartoon characters and robs them of any chance of deep and lasting intimacy. It sets the stage for a life of the man in his man-cave and the wife out shopping with the girls, living miserably ever after.
That’s not what we want.
Dana and I want to spend our entire lives getting to know each other better and more closely. I want to figure out what I can do to make her life better, and do it! She wants to find out what I really need, and provide it! This is how we can be the couple that is still flirting with each other and having fun together in our 80’s! Today’s book helps us to do just that.
The last post in our series of Marriage Foundation books is actually about couple of books: For Women Only and For Men Only. These two books reveal the very practical, deep, down things that a husband would like his wife to know, and that a wife would like her husband to know about her. The books are drawn on research that Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn have conducted, where they asked good questions and got real answers. We did these books as a Bible study with our marrieds group, and it made for good conversation about how the opposite gender really thought about serious issues. We felt like it took the principles of love and respect and 5 Love Languages and went a practical step further. Of course they are presenting results that won’t be true 100% of the time for your or your spouse, but our group found the themes to be helpful starting points to understanding our spouses more completely.
For Men Only
For Men Only busts the myth that women are emotional puzzles that you can never solve and can never hope to understand.
It’s subtitle is: A straightforward guide to the inner lives of women. (I know that you are thinking “straightforward” and “women” are mutually exclusive terms, but they actually aren’t.) A key quote from this book is: “You will realize that you can understand your wife and make her happy.” Isn’t that a relief!!!??? The authors then go on to review 7 areas that guys somewhat understand about women and take them to a much deeper level. It is a very readable book, and they even include a Quick Start Review Guide, with each of the 7 sections mapped out in a simple outline:
- Why does she…?
- Here’s Why:
- What To Do:
I’m not saying that you could skip the whole book and just read the Quick Start Guide, but it would definitely be better than nothing!)
For Women Only
For Women Only busts the myth that your husband is a simplistic Neanderthal creature that you totally understand, and needs your pity. The subtitle of the book is “The truth about his inner life he desperately wants you to know.” Shaunti was doing research for a novel that she was writing and was trying to ‘get inside the head’ of one of her male characters. As she quizzed a lot of men, she was shocked to find out what was actually going on inside those heads. And so she conducted a survey to find more systematic data about men and wrote a book about the revelations she found. She says, “These revelations were mostly things that my own husband always wished I knew, but couldn’t figure out how to explain.”
She then addresses 7 areas of the inner lives of men. Most wives probably have a basic understanding of these 7 areas, and maybe you even think you have it all figured out. Chances are you don’t, and her information can help you get a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the man you love.
Now that we have wrapped up the last of the series, we hope that you will take some time to look back at the topics from the 6 books. Which book would be best to read or re-read this year? Which concept or topic can you focus on like a laser? We are a month away from Valentine’s Day. What topics would help make it the best one ever?
Remember, the real key to a strong marriage foundation is getting to know your spouse so you can serve them the way they need to be served. You can start building that foundation today!
For Women Only: Read about the book and see the questions that they asked in the survey.
For Men Only: Read about the book and see the questions that they asked in the survey.
The Foundation of Marriage Series:
If you are interested in more of our thoughts about marriage, simply click on Guys – Husband or Gals – Wife to read more of our posts.
Not already a subscriber to OPL? Put your email address into the box at the right!