Remember those swoon-inducing, romantic gestures he once dizzied you with before you said “I do?” Ever wonder exactly which black hole they were unexpectedly sucked into? While dating, women analyze every move he makes in regards to her, just as a scientist forming and testing a hypothesis. ” How does he feel?” “Does he love me?” “Where is this going?” “What did he mean by that?” Once the wedding planning commences, the analytics subside and surrender to the intoxication of the honeymoon. Now fast forward a few years. Responsibilities have consumed him. She’s no longer receiving what she perceives as tokens of his love and is left wondering what happened to her dizzying gestures. She still longs for the swooning high from the early years. Without this, she begins to wonder: “Does he still love me?”
Men and women have very different methods of expressing their love. When a relationship begins, a man will show his love for you by spending time with you above others. He will forsake his family and friends for time with you. He is consumed with thoughts of you. He will also display the metaphorical beating of his over-sized chest for you. “This is my girl.” “Are you looking at my girl?” While we humans may have refined this behavior a bit, it still bears a striking resemblance to mate claiming in the animal kingdom. Once Cupid’s arrow has embedded itself, he will also begin to “provide” for you. This will include taking you out to dinner, treating you to a movie, and buying you flowers and gifts. These early signs of his love represent the romantic gestures women enjoy that get lost in the translation of marriage.
Once married, a shift occurs in how he expresses his love…this is because men are incredibly practical creatures. They’re very capable of prioritizing what needs to be done to reach a particular goal. When dating, his goal was to win you over and marry you. Unless he’s been living under a rock for his entire existence, he’s well aware of what’s required to accomplish this goal. However, now that he’s won you over, his goals have changed- along with his responsibilities. He now has the responsibility of taking care his family, not a challenge he takes lightly. This is now his main focus. Guess why? Because he loves you. He is showing his love for you by ensuring a nice home, food on the table, and financial security. He must provide for you because…you guessed it…he loves you. Men are not big on sappy declarations of love. For him, actions are a more productive means of expressing his love than words. While women are more feeling oriented, men are more action oriented. So, working hard in order to provide for you, tending to your car needs (filling your gas tank, making sure your tires are properly aired, washing your car), cleaning the kitchen before you get home, massaging you after a long day–these are your newly evolved gestures of love ladies. Recognize and appreciate them as such.
Men prefer to share space rather than feelings. Connecting, for him, may include a road trip, hiking, or some other activity that includes only the two of you. These side-by-side activities are bonding for him. If there are issues in the relationship, he would prefer to handle it with a non-pressure activity such as this. You can talk without ambushing him and boring your eyes into his soul expectantly. This is why he cringes when you demand a sit-down, face-to-face talk about what’s missing from your relationship? You may as well sit him in the corner and proceed to chastise him because this will cause him to feel trapped and attacked. It’s not all that different to him than a lecture from his mom–and the last thing you want is to be perceived as mom-like. Neither of you want that association come magic time. For him, eye contact represents a challenge, not an opportunity for growth. A together no-pressure activity may be his way of saying, “I do love you. Let’s fix our problem.” Another way to read his love gauge for you is sex. A man in love has an emotional connection to you and will pamper you in bed. He will strive for your enjoyment. Without love, sex with him will be nothing more than an act of lust. Women are perceptive; you’ll have no problem deciphering between the two.
As women, we’re forever searching for those little romantic gestures. As married women, we sometimes feel we’re treading water in a barren sea–void of romance. Unfortunately, we’re unaware that our “romantic gesture” may not come in the form of fireworks overhead, but in the form of a life raft occupied by him. As times change, so does our definition of romance. Next time he changes your oil or takes out the trash, remember this is his way of pledging his love for you. Your response: “I love you too.”