Raising the Bar (Relationship Series) 

   

This post is for women. Maybe the men will gather something from it, yet it’s written from my heart to women everywhere. Please don’t settle. 

I’m surrounded by men. I chose an occupation that’s mainly male. My family is male dominated. I observe the way men treat women. I listen to the way they talk about women. 

I am not stating men are bad or evil. I do know one principal that’s proven true over the ages…men will (without deep fellowship with God and moral leading) do what they can get away with. It applies to women as well.

I have seen countless women have their lives destroyed by charm that was later revealed to be deception. In the past 10 years over 75% of the associates I’ve known who married have divorced or struggle greatly. So, I hope these tidbits might help someone. 

This isn’t to alarm you. It’s hopefully to provide some insight. 

I asked some of the men I know from work the following questions and here were their candid responses. 

Why do some men only do romantic things while dating? 

A. Why keep doing romantic things? Then she will keep expecting it. I married her, she’s lucky to be with me. You do the romantic things to get a woman…you don’t keep doing them. 

Why if a man has a beautiful, amazing wife or girlfriend will he keep checking out other women? 

A. It’s a guy thing! Men will be men (I hate this phrase by the way). 

If someone was going to kill you or your wife, would you offer to save her? 

A. Why do I have to die? I can get a new wife. Only two men said they would try to save their wives. One wanted to die because he hates being married. Not kidding. 

Why do some men lie? Avoid confrontation? Ignore women instead of dealing with issues.

A. Women don’t want the truth. They can’t handle the truth. And you’re so emotional. We don’t like getting in trouble. Ignoring you we hope you get the hint and go away or leave it alone. It’s a guy thing. 

Why do some men pretend to be someone they are not? 

A. To impress a woman or our guy friends.

What do you add to the relationship?

A. I kill bugs. I take out the trash. I work. I don’t cheat or beat her. 

Notes from them: If they tell you they are not interested, they are not interested. Don’t date or marry them for potential. They are opposed to someone trying to change them. It’s part of the guy code to accept them as they are. For some they admitted being afraid of rejection or failure so they won’t plan dates or go the extra mile. They are sometimes more wounded by rejection than women.

Below are some stories I lumped into categories. Every person is different, I simply lumped stories together based on what I’ve seen or encountered. This isn’t an attempt to sterotype. 

Disclaimer: there are some genuine gentlemen out there. The point isn’t to go around trying to look for dirt, it’s to use wisdom and discernment. 

Mr. Glittering Charmer: 

This guy is charming and wonderful. He says all the right things. Does all the right things. He’s learned what women want to hear. He comes off as someone overwhelmingly wonderful. He’s darn near perfect. Getting you to fall for him fuels his ego.

What can we learn about the charmer? 

1. No one is perfect except God. People come with a few quirks and flaws. 

If someone tells us everything we want to hear all the time, it’s a potential red flag. If they like every single thing we like, it’s a potential red flag. 

2. The Charmer has been told the way into a women’s heart and life is through flattery and charm. His motive is not love, it’s selfish gain and ego.

Stories…

I’ve changed names to protect identities. 

There was Jimmy. Jimmy was on the surface a great guy. He claimed to love God. He liked all the same things Mary loved. He seemed to be a great person. Mary prayed. The more she prayed, the stranger Jimmy behaved. The mask of charm fell off and she began to see Jimmy wasn’t following Jesus at all. He eventually confessed he told women what he thought they wanted to hear to get what he wanted from them. If they liked something, he liked it. He morphed (pretended) to be whoever he thought they wanted so they’d like him. He hurt many women. He used them. Mary was wise to seek God instead of simply going along with Mr. Jimmy Charmer. It prevented her from being used as well. 

There was Beth who had a pursuer who showed up from her past. He presented himself to be an amazing guy with a heart of gold. Gerald ended up marrying Beth. While married he cheated on her with several women and divorced her after getting his citizenship. 

There was Mila and Todd. Todd pursued Mila and presented himself to be an amazing guy. He was always at church and seemed excited about God. After several years of marriage and children, it was found out Todd was having affairs with men, doing drugs, and he left Mila with two kids to raise on her own. Mila became ill and Todd refused to help. He was also verbally abusive to their children.

There was David and Victoria. David was a super charmer who made people believe he was awesome. The more Victoria got to know him, the more the facade began to fade. David was a ragaholic, verbally abusive, unkind, jealous, and hateful. He also began stalking Victoria once she broke things off. He hacked into her email and followed her around. 

Tidbits continued…

3. Pray about any potential mate. Seriously pray and ask God to show you who they really are. People can hide crazy. They can’t hide it from God. Once the heart is involved the brain can get clouded. Just because a person goes to church or claims God doesn’t mean they are truly a genuine person. 

4. Just because someone presents themselves one way doesn’t mean that’s who they are. 

5. Get to know family and friends of a potential mate. People who have known them a long time and can attest to their character.  Pay attention. Who can vouch for their walk with God? 

Date them long enough to see if there is fruit of God’s Spirit. Let your friends and family meet them. What do the people closest to you have to say?  

Do they have Christian community? If not that’s a huge red flag! 

Mr. Looking for Any Woman: 

This guy may seem sincere in his desire to tie the knot. He starts looking for someone to meet his checklist of a wife. He may attempt to move the relationship fairly quickly or use terms of endearment quickly. 

He may say things like, “You’re perfect for me!” Or “You’re everything I want or need.” 

The issue with Mr. Any Women is it’s not about loving you or getting to know who you are. It’s about filling a void and checking you off a list. You will spend lots of time listening to him talk about himself or how you can benefit him. 

Why is this a problem? If you’re content to have a relationship without friendship or love, it’s cool. If you actually want to be with someone who cares about you, not just what you represent, then it’s problematic. Getting married is not like buying a car. It’s a merging of two lives and families. A wife is not a thing to be acquired, she’s a person to be loved.

Stories…

Names changed to protect identities.

There was George. George decided it was time to find a wife. All his friends were getting married so he needed to as well. He decided the best way was to try to get to know several single female friends he had, take them on dates. He was also getting to know another woman. One of the puzzle pieces had to fit right? 

The problem is George was treating women like things instead of people. He chose to pick women who were friends with each other. He told them all how amazing they were. He failed to see that humans are not things. He was looking out for himself. 

There was Jeff who believed he was a great catch because he was doctor. He too was looking for any woman to be his wife. She only needed to be pretty, a Christian, and be willing to give up her life, dreams, ambitions to support his. He didn’t seek to know the women he dated. He talked about himself. He didn’t care what the lady had to say. He needed a role filled. 

What do we learn from Mr. Any Woman…

1. A good relationship is built on two people getting to know each other. If he’s only talking about himself or bringing up how you can bless him, red flag! 

Love is not selfish or one sided. 

2. A relationship is a merging of two lives, not one person being consumed so the other can live. 

Mr. Shady or Nonchalant 

This guy has a way of stringing women along. He has no intention of going the extra mile or loving well. He will give you the bare minimum to keep you hanging onto the fantasy that there’s actually a relationship. His behavior is shadier than a rainforest. If confronted on his behavior, he will quickly blame you. You’re emotional or needy. 

What you need to learn from Mr. Shady or Nonchalant…

1. Love treats you well and does not leave you guessing. If a man is interested and serious, his actions will reflect it. 

2. This guy will continue treating you the way you let him. 

3. It’s not healthy to tolerate poor treatment.

Mr. Fear or Control

This guy is either afraid of commitment, intimacy, rejection, or you thinking he likes you when he doesn’t or is unsure. He may be deeply insecure which is the root of fear or control. 

He may come close and then run away. He may do things that make no sense. He may act like he wants to date you then run for the hills. Fear causes flakiness or fleeing. He may invite people to every meeting with you to avoid intimacy. There is wisdom in meetings if you don’t know someone well. Yet if they never can meet you for even a coffee in a public place or at the church bookstore, it’s something to question. If you’re not stalking him, and he wants to get to know you…a public meeting place is not unreasonable. He also may be married or in another relationship.

Mr. Control wants you to obey him, blindly follow him, and may see being a leader as what he says goes. 

What can we learn from Mr. Fear…

1. If you’re not giving him a reason to run away, it’s his insecurity or fear. 

I read there’s a natural pull away that men do to access how they feel. Yet if he’s always hot then cold, or cold then there’s probably an issue. 

2. Only God’s love casts out fear. 

Stories…

There was Jane. James expressed interest for her yet refused to call her his girlfriend. He knew she wanted marriage, but he was afraid of comittment. He continued to date her without any comittment. 

There was Paul. Paul used women for his physical pleasure. Anytime the relationship seemed to move towards being serious he ran. His motive was sex. Paul hurt many women but his mantra was “Say whatever you need to say and do whatever you need to do to get what you want.” He went to church like everyone else and led many women into his bedroom. 

There was John who micromanaged and controlled his wife and family. He was in charge. He was the man of the house. His wife was the sidekick that supported his mission. It was his way or the high way.

Tidbits…..

3. Fear is actually selfish. Control is selfish. It’s caring more about protecting oneself than others. 

It’s challenging not to take it personally yet I tell my girls, how a person treats you is a reflection of their heart. 

4. Fear and control are fruits of insecurity and a lack of God’s love. 

5. Pray for Mr. Fear or Control to encounter God’s love. 

You don’t have to date him or be a pawn in his game. Yet Mr. Fear and all others need revelations of God’s love. 

Final Notes:

No matter who the guy is who’s pursuing your heart, may you submit him to God. Your heart is not a toy. You are of infinite worth. God wants to give you His best. 

Love, 

Erin 

  

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