People watching – it really is in the look

Or perhaps I should say couples watching!

Recently I’ve taken to watching how other couples inter-react.  And by that I don’t mean the words they use, the terms of endearment (or not!), not even the body language – but the way they look at each other.  A lot can be understood from a person’s eyes.

It’s truly wonderful to see warmth and love in someone’s eyes.  Two of my closest friends – the two who I’ve told about this blog – share that warmth (both given and received) with their spouses.  I don’t expect they even realise they do it. But wow do they.  It is heart warming to watch how their eyes light up as they look at each other – however fleeting the look.  It’s there.

I see it in others too.  But I also notice when it’s absent. And it’s like a cold shower of sadness when I watch other couples almost beat each other up with just a look.  Or should I say the absence of that look of love.  There can be so much punishment dished out in a look.

Yesterday I met the wife of one of the anti-stadium campaigners I am working with.  Even before she opened her mouth her eyes said it all. Contempt, bitterness and spite oozed from her eyes. I don’t think for me.  But maybe she does see me as a threat – I hope not, because I’m not!  (Why?  Because I will never do to anyone else’s marriage what was done to mine).

Then she spoke.  And her words confirmed the look she had given her husband.  She spoke about him rather than to him.  And none of the words were kind.  This lovely, generous-hearted man, gave me an apologetic, sheepish smile.  I wanted to say to her “There is absolutely no threat from me to your marriage but, for goodness sake, he will go in the end if you continue to treat him this way.  What on earth are you giving him to want him to stay.”

So my dear readers, do you see the same things?   Did you experience that sense of loss when your spouse stopped giving you  love with their eyes. And was it that, without knowing it, that sparked something deep inside you which told you things weren’t right.

I know when I met the woman who was to become Alex’s OW that the look he gave her send a shudder down my spine.  Though I’m not sure if the look was more lust than love.  The trigger was too strong for me to distinguish that, plus I hadn’t learnt all that I’ve learnt now (from my life coaching and just the situation I’m now in).  I also know that the look was not reciprocated. This woman was just plain predatory and determined to get what she seemed to be saying with her eyes was her right to have.  There was no look of warmth and true desire in a loving way.  No, there was determination and control.

So do we fail to notice these subtle but vital signs and act.  Or do we ignore them or justify them to ourselves in our attempt to blank out what we don’t want to see or acknowledge.

I’d love to know what you think and to read about what you’ve noticed.

Thank you for contributing!

Thank you to all those who are contributing to my mini-debate (which I hope you will continue to do! – Whichever post takes your fancy!).

I am really enjoying your views to these very important issues and the ensuing discussions.

And, of course, it would be great to discuss a great deal more!

For instance do we sub-consciously attract the type of partner we actually don’t want!

If I think about it I do have a tendency to attract ‘weak’ men.  Maybe because I am a good organiser and activator – who knows!   And because of my need to feel secure I think I can see the ‘adoration’ as a secure place to be.  Wrong!  I know I get nervous by someone who is too self-assured – probably because of what happened to me when I was 15 (he was a very self-assured 40 year old).  I now think I can be scared that that type of man would hurt me. The self-assured men I went out with in my 20s made me feel a bit insecure.

But then I didn’t feel 100% secure with Alex all the time.  And the more I got ‘pushed’ into being “masculine strong” the more uncomfortable and unloved I felt.  The more I asked to be loved, the more I got a lip-service response.  And I knew it was lip-service.  Even if I can only now admit it.

So, dear reader, do you think you attract / attracted a ‘wrong’ partner? And do you think you are in danger of doing the same again?  If so do you know why?

BTW – I also believe that  ‘Wrong’ partners can become ‘right’ partners – but they have to want to be.  To change and become the people they really want to be – deep inside themselves  – but that has to come from within them.

Lastly  (in case you’re wondering) – these debates have been my idea and mine alone!  Clearly they have come about as a result of all the life coaching I’m going through!  And one of the outcomes of that is  a wish to understand not only how I work, but how other people have worked these things out for themselves.  So in case you are wondering Stephen had no idea I was going to do this – but I must say I have enjoyed reading his input to the debates – I hope you have to!

(Admin note:  If you have posted on my blog before your comments will now appear immediately.  If you are new here you will need to wait until I approve your message  so I can feel happy that you genuinely want to take part in this interesting debate!)

How does a strong woman become a Real Woman?

(Update:  I am glad I posted this as it is interesting to get other people’s take on this topic.  Stephen has commented one of my reader’s views.  It would be great to have some more views!  Thanks to those who have contributed so far.  Caroline.xx – By the way it would be great if a few more men gave their views!)

OK so in the interests of fairness on this on-line debate  – here on my blog.  I now need to consider the other side of the equation.

(And by the way this isn’t about changing people,  no-one can force someone to change – that has to come from within – that is a given!)

How does a ‘strong’ woman – one who has ended up in the ‘masculine’ role actually stop doing what she’s been doing (whether she liked it or not) without appearing to abdicate.

Because I know I did take over.  Alex told me at the end (after he’d left!).  I also know, if I’m brutally honest – and I tend to be here – that part of me liked being in charge.

But enough about me.  What I want to know is how do we stop doing what we did – without generating either blazing rows or a feeling of being patronising/ condesending  (ie I’m backing off so you can be a real man!).

By the way – I wonder if I’m ‘allowed’ to have femininity as a value – because if I allow myself that then actually I then get significance!

Some of you may get a bit lost here, which I can totally understand!

Anyway,  men – what do you think.  Are we ‘strong women’ far too intimidating?  Not feminine enough?  Are we failing to be the women we are supposed to be – something we’ve buried deep in our attempt to be equals at work?  Is society (whoever or whatever that is) turning us into something that isn’t actually ‘working’ in the general scheme of things which nature intended?  And by that I don’t mean women should be submissive!

Have we forgotten to be girlie?!  Have women forgotten how to be women!

Please do give me your thoughts.

The debate continues

(Please feel free to add to this debate through the comments box!  Several people have!)

Stephen has added a comment to my post Real Men don’t cheat. So my question is: Can a weak man learn to become a Real Man? I am finding this very interesting. Given what happened to my marriage! Can men learn to become Real Men? Can they ‘let go’ of all the things that caused them to behave in the terrible, deceitful way, to run, to cheat, to behave in such a low, self-pitying manner and actually work at turning themselves around?  Can they ‘stand up and be counted’. Look the world in the eye and really and honestly commit with determination and passion to becoming who they say they want to be.

Or are they too scared of admitting they were wrong.  And it’s all easier to live in the comfort of being weak.  After all there are women ‘out there’ who think that being in charge and dominant, domineering and controlling is the thing to be in this age of equality.  Some relish being so.  So weak men can continue to be weak and marginally unhappy, and spend their lives wondering why things aren’t quite right.

I know what I’m talking about as Alex ‘pushed’ me into that role. A role I truly didn’t want or enjoy.  A role I don’t want to end up in again.

By the way, just to be clear, I’m not expecting Alex to change! And if he actually did really commit, with the passion and determination I believe he would need, to becoming a real man it is by no means certain that I would even consider a life with him again. I don’t actually think he’s got it in him to do so! And what I want – what I really, really want(!) is a REAL MAN!  Because I rather fancy being a REAL WOMAN!!

Real men don’t cheat

Today my Life Coach, Stephen, has written on
Women Want A Real Man.

How true.

To this I would add “Real men DON’T cheat”.  Because they actually give rather than take. Giving is easy when everything in the garden is rosy, the sex is great and life is going along fine.  But the fact that two people voluntarily opt to spend the rest of their lives together means that there will be moments when things get a bit de-railed.  When one or both wake in the middle of the night and look at the sleeping figure next to them and think ‘I’ve chosen to spend the rest of my life with that!!’

Then of course along comes someone new.  Someone who now slips under the moral radar –  as one or both of the partnership is questioning whether things should be different.  That someone who is doing different things, forging their own path and that path suddenly becomes fascinating; the solution to all the sameness that has been around for the last ‘n’ years.  New views on life. New body to explore….. I could go on, but I’m sure you all know what I mean.

So rather than re-enliven the current relationship. To take time to understand the person they’re with, the cheat chooses the other route.  How much more fun to go off and have a new lot of fun with someone else.  And why on earth shouldn’t they. After all we are only on this planet once.  I get the feeling the cheat justifies all these actions to himself.

The Real Man, takes time to actually stop in his tracks and ‘work’ at what he’s got.  Seeks guidance, communicates, listens and puts in that effort. He gives.  The rewards – as Stephen says – are stunning.  Growth is regained.  Life, love, fun and happiness renewed.

All I ever wanted from Alex was for him to be the man I so desperately wanted him to be. And had he done so he would have seen a ‘me’ that gave beyond his wildest dreams.  Such a shame he chose to fail.

So to all men I say this.  Real men don’t cheat, they give.  And in return Real Women give back!