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What men are too nice to say

What men are too nice to say

Posted: Wednesday, June 16, 2010 8:01 pm
By: By Lisa Smartt

Women, you know I love you. I respect you. I am one of you. Other than times with family, my richest memories are those spent with other women. I love being a woman. I can laugh and cry at the same time. I can talk on the phone, cook supper, check homework and balance my checkbook all at the same time. OK. I can’t really balance my checkbook. But it has nothing to do with multi-tasking. The point is women are capable of amazing feats as well as tremendous intellectual accomplishments. 
But I’m disturbed about a trend in our current culture that undermines the value and intelligence of men. Now hear me out. I think men are getting a bad rap. Watch a few TV sitcoms and you’ll have to agree. Inevitably, Mom ends up saving the day with her wit and wisdom while Dad ends up wallowing in intellectual defeat and foolishness. Basically the message is, “It’s a good thing we listened to Mom. Dad is such a foul-up.” In the end, they all hug as if to say, “Poor Dad. He’s just incapable … but, we love him anyway.” Ouch. Even greeting cards have gotten in on the act, making fun of male intellect and sensitivity … or the lack thereof.
I live with men. I have one male husband, two “men in the making,” ages 12 and 14, and four male cats. Based on their wildly aggressive behavior, I’m guessing that even the squirrels in our yard are probably predominantly male. It’s like there are wafting vapors of testosterone everywhere on our property. I kind of like that. I like men and that’s why I can’t understand how the national sport of “male bashing” became so popular. I know some women have been terribly hurt by men. Unfortunately, marketers have tried to turn that hurt into a national bitterness against men, all for the sake of a dollar.
I don’t claim to speak for men. I’m just an observer. I’m guessing, from observations over the years, there are a lot of things men have wanted to say in response to the “male bashing.” The problem is a lot of men are just too nice and respectful to respond. The other problem is that men don’t want to experience the wrath of defensive women. That’s too bad. I think I’m going to step out on a limb today and attempt to set the record straight.
Based on my own “second hand” knowledge, I humbly submit this list:
Top Ten Things Men are Too Nice to Say:
1. “Stop talking and listen for a moment.”
2. “I need more respect and love, and less criticism.” 
3. “I like ‘saving the day.’”
4. “It’s important to me to feel needed.”
5. “I don’t know what shoes look best with that dress.”
6. “When you attack my abilities, it’s like saying, ‘I don’t love you anymore.’”
7. “I like to be greeted with a smile and a hug.”
8. “Physical intimacy is important in marriage.” (Women often bash men for not meeting their “emotional needs” … but sometimes turn a deaf ear to a man’s “physical needs.”  You can’t have it both ways. Both emotional and physical needs are legitimate needs … and should be considered with respect.)
9. “Please teach the kids to respect me. I’ll try to return the favor.”
10. “I don’t need another mom.”
Angry or appreciative letters can be sent to me at lisa@lisasmartt.com. And I’d like to dedicate this column to the man with whom I’ve spent the last 22 years of my life. Philip, I have never met a more capable, loving, strong, sensitive and interesting man. I feel privileged to walk through life hand in hand with you.
Published in The Messenger 6.16.10

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