Romance is more than flowers, a hand written letter of appreciation, an affectionate poem or any other of the many ways to express love. It is, in the end, a powerful key that opens the door to emotional intimacy between a husband and wife. Unfortunately, many women find themselves unfulfilled in this critical area of the marriage relationship.As long as there have been marriages in the modern age, women have expressed a need for more romance from their husbands. In the distant past, romance wasn’t so important. A successful marriage was defined as having produced a large family and survived the last winter. As our society has become more affluent, we have started focusing on higher level needs. One of those higher needs being a romantic expression of love. Or, in other words, an intimate emotional connection.Please note: Because they are so closely related, for the remainder of this discussion the terms romance and emotional intimacy will be used interchangeably.To increase the amount of romance in your relationship, you must first understand why your husband falls on the lower end of your romantic-fulfillment scale. As it has been said by wise individuals, “A problem clearly defined is half solved.” So, to more clearly define the problem, the romantically-resistant husband will generally fall into one of four main categories.
Overworked, stressed-out or lacking time – If your husband is worried about basic needs, putting food on the table or paying the mortgage, it is difficult concentrate on higher needs. To stop off on the way home and buy a dozen roses can be a mental challenge. Or, stressed-out by an intimidating work environment, it is a difficult to change mindset and sit down calmly to write a romantic letter.
Unable to recognize subtle emotional cues or uncomfortable opening the emotional element of romance – There is a difference in the way girls and boys are raised. As an example, a young girl falls, scrapes a knee and starts crying. Daddy picks her up, gives her a hug until the crying stops and a bandage to wrap things up. Compared this to a young boy in the same situation. Dad helps the little boy to his feet, applies the bandage and tells the little guy to tough it out.
The end result is that many men just do not develop the learned skills to perceive subtle emotional cues. Whether this is intentionally discouraged or an unintentional byproduct of our society doesn’t matter. Lacking the ability to recognize these emotional cues makes it very difficult to pull a romantic idea together.
A lack of focus – This could also be described as forgetting important dates, holidays and anniversaries. When a husband is asked to be more romantic by his wife and replies, “Sure, no problem. I can do that.” Just because nothing happens, doesn’t mean that he doesn’t love you. It just means the conversation was lost – never to be recovered from his brain’s memory bank.
How is it that a man can go to a grocery store to pick up three essential ingredients for dinner and return home with completely different items? It is a psychological mystery and an issue that must be addressed if there is going to be greater romance in the marriage.
Return on investment issues – Everyone, everywhere always acts in their own interest to a greater or lesser degree. By desiring to increase the amount and quality of romance in a relationship, you are first and foremost trying to create a marriage that fulfills an important need of yours. It is no different for men. Plain and simple, women see romance as a way to greater emotional intimacy; Most men see romance as a way to greater sensual passion. Other husbands may see greater romance as barter system allowing more free time watching/playing sports, for hobbies, with his buddies, etc.
By recognizing this component of human nature, the objective of a more romantic relationship can be achieved with greater speed and, more importantly, motivation from within your husband.
Making a change in the dynamics of the relationship requires that both partners be invested in the desired outcome. For men in this last category, they need to recognize the benefits of having a vibrant romantic exchange within the marriage.
If you have asked your husband to be more romantic with no results, then one or a combination of the above situations exists. Lack of romance is NOT an indication of lack of love. Lack of romance is a failure to recognize how being romantic can improve the marriage and create a relationship where your – and his – emotional and physical needs are fulfilled.What category the romantically-resistant man falls into does not matter. It is far too difficult to correctly interpret the inner workings of personal motivation. Make the wrong interpretation and there is no progress toward a more romantic marriage. The better assumption to make is that your husband falls completely into ALL the categories. In other words, the worst case scenario. By creating a solution that works every time for the most difficult situations, bringing your husband around will be as easy as one, two, three. To create the romantic marriage you need, desire and deserve, follow these steps:
Without complaining, nagging or pleading, explain HOW important romance is to you. (E.g., greater confidence in the relationship, a feeling of being loved, more emotional intimacy, etc.) Why a more romantic marriage would benefit him. (E.g., greater desire for sensual/physical passion on your part, more personal time for hobbies, sports, etc.) And finally, what your idea of romance actually looks, feels, sounds and smells like. Be careful what you ask for, because you very well may get it. Asking for flowers and getting flowers every Friday for all eternity is going to get very, old very quickly. On this last point, be very clear to him that variety is very important.
Acknowledge that your husband may be tired, stressed or overworked. Don’t take this opportunity point out that the distribution of chores household chores and responsibilities may be unbalanced (one issue at a time, we are trying to make the relationship more romantic first.) Let him know that being romantic is not planning a huge, expensive getaway but rather, regular expressions of love. The romantic getaways will come later, once the romance pump is primed. Happens all the time. For now focus on the basics.
Let him know that there are lots of romance ideas available in bookstores and on the internet. There are even full-featured romance building, relationship strengthening websites geared toward men. These interactive sites provide romantic ideas, tips and suggestions. Deliver them through email at the appropriate time. And, lastly, provide a personalized reminder service so that no anniversary, birthday or special occasion is ever forgotten. Do a quick search for Romantic Outsourcing on Google or Bing to see what is available.
One word of caution, do not recommend, suggest, hint about or leave a browser window open to a pink, flowery, dancing red hearts, fluff-filled romantic website. If the objective was to send your husband running for the nearest cave – a website like that will do it. The website has to be romantic in a ‘manly’ way. Have faith, romance building websites that will appeal to your husband are our there and available to your husband.If you need a little help getting a romance discussion started in a way that will get your husband’s attention, I encourage you to read ‘How to Tell Your Husband You Need More Romance In Your Marriage – From A Man’s Point Of View.’