This question appears illogical, irrational and simply messed right up. No way could men and women want the same things, let alone what the same things in a relationship! Well, I’m going to let in on what I discovered conducting over 45 college classes. Okay, this was not scientifically conducted research, though nonetheless is quite relevant. Open your eyes, push away those distractions and get ready to be educated to the foundations that forge healthy relationships!
Here we go! During these college classes, I would instruct that each gender group to collectively list the traits which represent their “ideal” mate. The catch: They could not list any physical characteristics. Yes, I know both genders desire certain physical elements to bring out sexual desire and attraction. Though, the aim was to get at the core issues that keep the gender battles fueling.
What do men and women desire?
I would separate the genders and give them a set time allotment to collect their lists. It never failed; the women would have approximately 10-15 more items on their list than the men. Does this mean women are fussier than men? No, perhaps women are just more descriptive and fluent with words.
I would then ask each group to read off their lists while I compile them on the board. Traits in the realm of nice, kind, ambitious would ring off. Good sexually, loves sex, enjoys oral sex, along with being considerate would also be drawn on the board. Other terms such as having good manners, being a good parent, intelligent, and having a great sense of humor soon followed the list. Each group took their turn and even more descriptors were delivered: passionate, trustworthy, fun, not lazy, plus compassionate.
I have heard many of the same terms and traits used over and over in each class as the semesters passed. There were no surprises as I kept my unofficial research project going. Women would always have more traits on their list, and the men would throw some funny requests on their list. By and large each gender group would deliver their same descriptive traits, the same desires and requests in an ideal partner. Men would have theirs, just as the women would embrace their list over the years.
Men and women both desire the same traits!
As I wrote the traits on the board under each gender heading “Women” and “Men,” each class looked puzzled and amazed. What my research did was spark both groups to look at reality; after all they were the ones devising this reality. Both gender’s list were basically mirror images of the other. Yes! Women and Men wanted the very same things. The descriptions I listed above were actually from both groups!
But why to couples split up then?
After each class’ amazement wore off a bit, the usual question would be asked: “Greg, then how come so many couples fight and there are so many divorces?” This, I remarked, is a great question and there are many facets involved, such as personality differences, ways of handling situations, or perhaps value discrepancies. Then we can throw in estrogen and testosterone aspect that spice things up.
Perhaps the first step in reducing the arguing and reducing divorce rates is to have each individual realize they want the same fundamental things, not different! Realizing these elements can help couples become aware that their partners want to feel the same: loved, cherished, desired, important, and respected. The key aspects are to learn what is needed to make your partner feel these, and not battling with the defensive tactics and tit-for-tat warfare.