There is an author out there (I am not giving the name because I don't want this to turn into a love/hate discussion about the author) that basically contends that men are simple. If women give us three basic things:
Affection (this can range from a warm smile when you spot us across the room to F'ing our brains out for no apparent reason)
Appreciation (a gesture of acknowledgment and thanks for something we did/do for you)
Admiration (for the choices/actions we have made in life)
then men will pretty much give you anything you want, and do it gladly. After a lot of thought I have to say that, at least for me, this is absolutely right on. When I think of the relationships I have been in and why they didn't work, ultimately it boiled down to not getting one or more of these needs satisfied. What the author is saying is that women pretty much determine whether a relationship is going to work or not, they hold the keys to being happy. I am working on the assumption that we are not talking about inherently evil people - so those of you attracted to jerks on either side, well what can I say.
Is this contention just common sense, or outrageously simplistic? Does it hold an once of truth?
Neither men nor women are that simple because we are all very complicated beings and we are attracted for different reasons, some good and some destructive.
And men and women both want to be appreciated but what suggests appreciation is different for different people. Some women might appreciate a guy helping her with something around the house - hooking up the television, making the wireless work for the laptop. Others would much rather have a dozen roses. But, they both want appreciation. It is all a matter of what defines appreciation, not whether it exists.
The destructive nature occurs when a total giver meets up with a total taker.The enabling process works in the beginning but then it ends when the giver seeks appreciation and the taker does not understand that appreciation was part of the ground rules. And frankly, appreciation was never part of the ground rules and the relationship is doomed because of that.
So as a giver, I have to understand that I must be wary of the taker, not because the taker is bad, but because I am bad for not setting up proper ground rules so that the relationship has a chance to succeed. I, as a total giver, am just as responsible for the failure as she is as the total taker. There is no good and evil here, just an incompatibility and dysfunction combining with dysfunction. Here two wrongs never make a right.