Saturday, July 05, 2008

Shopping Together As Foreplay? If Done Properly, It Can Really Boost Your Relationship and Marriage

Attraction is about flipping primal, biological switches that ignite the urge to procreate, or at least go through the motions of mating. Leadership and authority will flip them because it invokes feelings of power and protection; will shopping awaken these primal urges as well? My research and others’ says, “Oh yeah!” but it’s not retail therapy that does the trick…

Strap yourself in, because we’re going for a ride. I’ve written many times about how attraction and flirting are dying arts that are slowly being revived as desperate singles and bored couples seek out people like myself, Shelley McMurtry, John Alanis, and others and learn what it’s all about. I’ve also advised quite a few people to look back to the actions of their parents and especially grandparents, old movies, etc., for visual examples of things that they did then that most people don’t do now but are crucial for relationships. Why?

A lot of that old school, gender-stereotypical behavior that made for manly men and girly girls was obliterated in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s by idiotic ideas like “men should be sensitive instead of manly” when all women wanted was for manly men to continue to be manly men, but be a little more sensitive to things like a woman’s emotional state and her sheer dread of boredom. Incidentally, note that divorce rates began climbing exponentially through those years as well.

I was talking to my dad a few days ago and he mentioned how different things were now from when I was a child, and I asked him about what couples did for fun in the 50’s and 60’s that he no longer saw them doing. The first thing out of his mouth was a revelation: “Well, when you’re mother and I got married and until you kids were pretty much either gone or old enough to be gone, we nearly always did the grocery shopping together. Your mother would get all frisky and cuddly in the grocery store every time we’d go, even if she was ticked about something when we got there. Didn’t you notice that you kids were often put to bed a little early when we went to the store?”

No, I didn’t notice, but it sure makes sense now!

The act of hunting down and procuring food, and returning home with it is very primal, making the evening meal somewhat celebratory in a primal sort of way. He also talked about having other couples over for card games, and being accused of cheating because he and my mother were playing footsy under the table during the game and stuff like that, which was also primally attractive because of the competition and celebration involved, but I couldn’t get the grocery store thing out of my head. This had to be checked out, because my parents stayed married for 33 years and had five kids on little more than attraction; their divorce happened after deep compatibility problems finally wore them down and out. (And to this day, I don’t know if they even understand that, because they won’t talk about it, but it was there for anyone with eyes to see.)

I’ve spent several hours each day for the last few days wandering around grocery stores and lurking in the parking lot watching for couples to show up (I was accosted by one store manager who thought I was acting suspicious until I explained what I was doing, at which time he took me to the security booth and we both watched the security cameras, which was a lot of fun for both of us!), and the results were more than impressive. They were downright awe-inspiring!

Couples would come in chatting, arguing, not speaking, even obviously pissed off at each other, and none of them seemed to make it more than about three aisles before they were walking closer together, him pushing the cart and her hand in the crook of his arm, or holding hands, or her stroking and caressing his back and shoulders, and the smiles and other body language was very clear. I also recall similar experiences with the women I’ve been involved with in my adult life, and it went right over my head at the time, as it may be going right over everybody else’s heads today. I wish my grandparents were still alive today so that I could pick their brains about a lot of things; they were married for 66 years, and I’m quite sure they could have told me about a lot more of these kinds of things if they were still around.

So guys, how do you put stuff like this to work? Start by understanding the underlying elements of creating attraction: leadership, protection, mimicking primal survival behavior, decision-making, competition, etc. Now, let’s build an evening out of it.

I’d suggest starting by planning at least an evening meal, and take your partner with you to get the groceries. Take your time and have fun perusing the aisles in the grocery store instead of just rushing straight to the things you want and grabbing them. Turn on a little of that naughty charm and steal a kiss or two, a playful pinch or grope, conducted intimately, as if you’re a couple of naughty kids getting away with something. Go home and cook dinner for her, or for her and a guest couple.

Continue to ramp up the fun and tension after dinner through a movie (yes, a funny one!) or some other activity, like a sunset walk, or if you have the other couple over, engage in something fun and competitive like parlor games, and when she gets up from the table to get something for herself or the guests, get up to help (don’t worry about being rude, as they may be getting caught up in the energy and wanting to steal a kiss or a grope themselves!), and push the naughty envelope a bit while you’re out of sight of the guests. That “ramp it up and draw back a bit” play builds a delightful tension that women will savor for hours, and when the guests finally leave, she’ll lock the door and probably be tearing at your clothes if you did a good job at ramping up and pulling back.

By the way, DO NOT confuse procurement of needed items with “retail therapy.” Retail therapy, the act of buying things for the thrill of the purchase with no real need or desire for some benefit of ownership, is something that people do when they are bored or suffering from some kind of self-esteem crisis, and make no mistake, it is damaging to a relationship or marriage. It creates financial strain, storage problems, and a lot of stress. Keep your shopping dates to things you know you need or have discussed and decided that you want to own and benefit from ownership, and avoid just grabbing stuff for the thrill of hearing the cash register bells; those bells are for the shopkeeper to celebrate, not you.

I’ve told you guys too many times to count that the object is not to seduce your wife, but to induce your wife to seduce you. This is how you get that done, and I shudder to think of how many such secrets our parents and grandparents took to their graves. If yours are still alive and your comfortable doing so, you might ask them about their dating days and the early years of their marriage. You might be surprised at how eager they are to share with you.

However, not everybody’s parents and grandparents will have been good at playing the attraction game. More men and women understood it 50 years ago, but that’s a far cry from being able to say that ALL men and women understood it fifty years ago.

Before you start pumping the older folks for the advanced techniques of their day, you really need a good command of the basics so you can distinguish between something great that can add spice to your life and a mistake that an ancestor made that will haunt generations to come if they don’t know any better than to repeat the mistake. Oops! Where do you go for that?

Glad you asked! Go to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and download your copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," where you’ll find all the basics and then some, on attraction, effective communications, evaluating and renewing relationships, and even how to gracefully end bad ones with cooperation and dignity. Yes, really! Here are a few choice excerpts from a reader letter I received today:

“...I think she is missing me more than she will admit and it’s because of the ATTRACTION that YOUR BOOK has helped me instill back in her...”

“...things are progressing back to getting the woman I love back completely...”

“...the thing I like the MOST is SHE is CALLING ME .... NOT Me calling HER...so I must be doing something RIGHT LOL...”

“...have a great day and thanks if for no other reason for making me a better man...”

This guy described himself as “the wuss from Hell” in his first letter to me, and was afraid he was too late to do anything about it; he mentioned in one of his letters that they’d been separated for a couple of years and she had told him that under no circumstances would they ever be together again, yet they’re dating, she’s chasing him, they’re getting totally intimate, and she’s fighting tooth and nail the whole way, testing him to make sure it’s not just some phony act he’s putting on and that this new man before her is here to stay. He is, he’s getting results, and if a self-proclaimed “wuss from Hell” can have an ex of two years pulling him back into the bedroom after she declared that donkeys would fly through a frozen Hell before she’d ever sleep with him again, you have no choice but to accept that this information works, and you need to be getting with the program, NOW! (Right, “Michael” K.?)

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Friday, July 04, 2008

What Are You Looking for in Your Relationship and Marriage, or Are You Looking At All?

Great things are where you find them, especially in relationships, marriages, and opportunity in general, but you have to be looking for them to see them. Believe it or not, that’s a lot more a matter of attitude than opportunity, luck, or providence…

Today (July 4th, as I write this) is a holiday here in the United States. I’ll spare you another speech about its significance because I said all that can be said about it in yesterday’s lesson, but we celebrate it by gathering together as family and friends, and the guys do lots of “guy things,” like cooking animal flesh over fire while drinking and swapping stories, and at nightfall we throw everybody in the cars and trucks and head for the nearest fireworks show (many thanks to our Chinese brothers for inventing and continuing to manufacture them!).

I’m swimming in testosterone right now, because there’s a hundred pounds of pork ribs in my smoker that is going to feed an army of hungry “good people” shortly, and I smell of hardwood smoke and burning pork fat, which where I live, is a very powerful aphrodisiac! No matter where you live or what your life is like, find a reason to get together with others at least once a month and practice these rituals of cooking over fire, communing and telling stories, all of which have evolved from the ancient hunt. It awakens something primal and wonderful for which there does not seem to be any substitute.

Since everything is looking good in the smoker and it’s awhile yet before time to greet family, friends, and neighbors, I sat down to check my e-mail and found a couple of starkly contrasting pieces that screamed out “NEWSLETTER!!!!” So while I usually do this late at night based on some experience of the day, I’m doing it early today while the message is still at the forefront of my mind and easy to share with you.

The first thing I saw was a notice that a reader named Ryan had ended his subscription to this newsletter. Ryan had subscribed about two weeks ago, on June 23, and his comment describing his reason for cancelling read:

“NOTHING OF VALUE”

Just below it was an e-mail from another reader, and I about laughed myself sick when I looked up his subscription date and found that it was also June 23, and he submitted the following:

Hello David,

Thank you! Your book is awesome! All of your readers of your daily email should sack up and buy your book. Sometimes that macho crap gets in the way and we limit ourselves from learning more about the women in our lives. We do often think that we should naturally know everything....after reading your book I knew that I didn't know much!

My marriage came to an end a while ago and my ex was always turning to "relationship experts" like Dr Phil and John Gray just to name a couple. Yes being the good man (or trying to) I read their books. Although they had some interesting ideas, none of them had an impact on me the way your book did.

I have been in a new relationship with a woman now for about a year. I did not want this relationship to turn sour like all the other ones so I decided to be proactive and read your book. WOW! Over the past couple of weeks since I bought your book, I started to take control and the results have been amazing. I have not had a problem with self confidence or had a problem attracting women through out my life, but after a while things would always change. I could not sustain the attraction. This woman is amazing and I did not want to sabotage this one too. Your book is the bomb dude and I will direct as much attention to you as I can!

One of my buddies asked me this weekend why I was so happy and I told him I wish that he could feel for 5 minutes what I feel everyday now. My beautiful woman is into me like no one’s business and looks at me in a way where I feel her love, even when we are not together. After almost a year we are more in love today than ever before. Thank you David for doing what the so-called "relationship experts" could not.

Rock on Dude,

Mike

P.S. By the way...I packed her stuff up and we went for a picnic this weekend when she got home from work. The results are too X-rated to put here...lol. Later!

(The picnic Mike refers to in the post script is a surprise outing I describe in the "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage,” wherein after you have learned how to read your partner and pay attention to the little things about her, like what she never leaves the house without on a day trip, weekender, etc., you come home a little early from work or send her off on an errand so you can have the house to yourself for an hour or so and prepare a picnic, day trip, weekend outing, etc. – just any kind of surprise trip to shake things up and give her a break from routine. It’s a wonderful exercise in attraction-building and adventure that every woman appreciates.)

The stark contrast in the findings and underlying attitudes of these two readers still has me reeling. One was looking for answers and found them, and I’m still trying to figure out what the other one was looking for, but it took them exactly the same length of time to report their findings; my e-mail is updated every three minutes and these two came in together.

I’m hyper-analytical. You could probably count the original thoughts I’ve had in my life on both hands and a foot, but I can extract the cause and effect equation from any situation quickly and accurately, and it’s painfully automatic. Everything I see or hear first causes me to visualize, then analyze, then look for parallels once the cause and effect is known and logical deductions and projections that can be made from them. (That’s why you never find opinion or theory in my newsletters or books!)

When these letters hit me, the first big question was, “what else do men miss because they aren’t looking for it, or are looking somewhere besides at their partners to find it?”

Think about that. Is there something that you wish you and your partner shared, or could share or do together, that you have just assumed she wouldn’t be interested in or do? Are you right now or have you recently made the mistake of involving others in the problems of your life or relationship because you assume that your partner won’t want to discuss it, or resolve it?

Do you have any idea how many missed opportunities to deepen and improve your relationship and your life occur as a result of that? Or how many affairs are started because of that? How many misunderstandings it generates?

Don’t be like Ryan. If there’s something lacking at home, don’t go outside to find it before making absolutely sure that it’s not sitting there undiscovered right under your nose at home. Talk to your partner, and listen – or are you able?

I’ll go to my grave preaching this sermon. Effective inter-gender communication is not something that we are born well-suited to even do, let alone succeed at. It is a skill that must be developed, not a talent determined by a gene. For those of you who have seen the “Men State, Women Negotiate” excerpt from "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage" in my free "Break-Up Busting 101" report, you know that as complex as it all seems, it pretty much boils down to the ruthless exercise of three simple rules that anybody can follow.

The question is “What are you looking for?” which begs the other question, “What is motivating you to look for anything?” Are you like Ryan, maybe looking for justification for your past mistakes so that you can blame somebody else for leaving you, or are you like Mike, realizing that you wouldn’t be reading this if everything was perfect, and that something that appears logical, people are using with success, and is guaranteed to work is worth a try, and therefore taking action and getting outstanding results?

Only you can make that choice, and I dare say that it is inevitable that you will be held accountable for it, if by nothing else, the state of your own life and that of your family’s, so choose well…

I don’t want to get too carried away with coincidences, but if you want to be “like Mike” (to those of you who saw the movie, I swear that’s his real name!), just do what he did. Jump over to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and download your own copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," and get busy. It took him from June 23 to July 4 – 11 days – to write that letter. How quickly can you turn your life and relationship around?

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Pleasure or Pain: More on Horseplay and "Picking" in Relationships and Marriage

One of the women takes issue with being picked on the wrong way, and rightly so. If you’re going to do it, you’d better do it the right way, or you’ll be paying for it later. Understanding our differences makes it easy to get it right…

Happy Independence Day America! Take a minute and remember what bought the liberties you enjoy today, a great many human lives over the course of two centuries, and resolve yourself to start doing a better job of protecting those freedoms before all the special interest groups end up stealing them right out from under your nose. And for those of you not in America, whatever freedoms you enjoy were bought with blood, too, so be vigilant, and do what you can to earn more freedom instead of being disinterested, disenfranchised, and disinvolved while the disingenuous usurp control over your life.

Yesterday’s newsletter on picking and playing touched off a barrage of “Amen’s” from the women whose husbands shied away from playing, but there was one that was on a different plane that we need to discuss. Her husband tries to play, but he goes about it all wrong. Meet Gina:

Hi David,

I loved this and all of your e-mails. I wish you could get my husband to understand this. He’s constantly making mean remarks about me, thinking that he’s being funny. He demeans me in front of his friends and family, my friends, family, and coworkers, and he’s embarrassed me to tears more times than I can count. He’s a good man, attractive, very alpha male, and keeps me moving, but when he does this I could just kill him, because it really hurts.

He tells everybody I’m always late everywhere I go; it’s true. We have four kids and I have a hard time getting all of them ready to go anywhere. I have a hard time keeping my weight under control because I tend to eat more when I’m stressed, and I’m always stressed, and he’ll point out to people when I’ve gained weight or my clothes are too tight. He makes fun of me when make any mistake, and makes it his mission to point it out to everyone for a week or more after.

I can’t get him to understand that this isn’t funny and it hurts badly, and I’ve about had all I can take of it. When I told him that, he made fun of me for being dramatic! I love him with all I have, but I’m starting to feel like a verbal punching bag and to be honest, the main reason I’m always stressed isn’t our four kids, it’s living in fear of what he’s going to say next to mortify me! Can you help?

Thanks so much,
Gina


I handled Gina’s request for help by private correspondence because there were some specific issues and instructions that I don’t want to go into here for several reasons, among them her privacy, but we do need to talk more about this.

I have a good friend who also does this, and his name is Rick. He’s an alpha male from the ground up: retired cop, now consulting in law enforcement, sharp, articulate, and one of us guys who enters a room and everybody just turns and starts moving in that direction because they can sense leadership from across the room.

He loves his “wife” (they never had a wedding, but have been together since dinosaurs roamed the Earth and conduct their lives as if they are married), and she both loves him and is wildly attracted to him, even after years of putting up with his sense of humor, but it is indeed a problem. He sounds just like Gina’s man, making fun of things like her weight that she is really sensitive about, and nobody, myself included, can get him to understand that he’s hurting her. He says she’s as tough as he is and that’s why he loves her.

She’s tough as nails, but she’s also a woman, and even the toughest women have their hot buttons, just like men. She lives in constant torment of loving and being attracted to a man who inadvertently hurts her every other time he opens his mouth, and I really don’t know how much more of it she’s going to be able to take.

Being tough doesn’t mean that nothing hurts; it means you go on with your life in spite of hurting, just like being brave doesn’t mean you’re never scared, it just means you do what you have to do in spite of being scared.

What’s escaping Gina’s husband, my friend Rick, and a lot of other men I know is that this is an area where men and women are fundamentally different. Men jab at each other’s vulnerabilities to play and to help each other toughen up, and to challenge each other to do something about our vulnerabilities. We poke each other in the stomach when we notice a few more cheeseburgers and beers collecting around the belt line and make a crack like “Expanding the shed to keep your tool from rusting there, Bob?” There’s no telling how many thousands of years we’ve done it, and it’s a ritual of strengthening, and bonding, a sort of intimacy that only our friends are allowed to engage in with us.

With women, it’s different. The only time you will hear a woman bring up another woman’s vulnerability to her face is if she is on the offensive. They only do it to hurt each other when they are being competitive or vindictive, and it hurts them badly when we do this. They may even try to excuse it as just us being us, but there’s that subconscious link to their communications infrastructure that still eats at them as if we had been a woman when we said something about their weight, or their feet, or a mole, or a gray root on a hair. It’s rejection, or a sleight, not a joke, in their book.

In our world, any minor flaw is something to rib your buddy about; in their world, it’s ammunition for the big guns. For us, mentioning our flaws is like a slap on the back and gets a laugh, while in theirs, it’s throwing down the gauntlet. That’s why I’ve said in previous newsletter that you can only say something in that kind of play if it’s an extreme exaggeration, like telling her she has a big butt if she has a very skinny butt and knows it, or call her “Bigfoot” when she has tiny feet, something so absurd as to be obviously a joke.

We’re alike in many ways, and it often deceives us into thinking that we are alike in ways that we are entirely different, even opposite. It is these deceptive differences that make us hurt each other when hurting each other is among those things that we indeed NEVER want to do.

Not knowing about them – simple ignorance – is very treatable; it takes only a little knowledge. Not caring about our differences and not trying to learn about them and avoid hurting each other with them – apathy – is also treatable, but it takes more drastic measures, like a pitcher of ice water on the crotch, an iron skillet upside the head, or in extreme cases, a divorce, or even a bullet or worse.

The question you have to ask yourself is which ailment do you have, ignorance or apathy, and how is your ailment going to be treated?

I’m going out on a limb here, but I’m going to guess that if you didn’t care, you wouldn’t be reading this, so we’re going to treat ignorance. That’s easy, fun, and dirt cheap. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you can thank me later… LOL! If you’re here looking for validation of your mistakes instead of a fix for your problems, that’s not going to happen here.

For right now, just concern yourself with getting the knowledge to fix this condition, and any others you may have, into your head and into practice, while your problems are still easy to fix. You can do it when they get hard, too, but it takes longer and everybody hurts a lot more in the meantime. Taking care of it NOW is your best bet.

If you’re smart enough to see that, and want to fix your problems before they get any worse, and even go on to make everything better than it’s ever been, start by going to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and downloading your copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," and you’ll see what those before you have already found: it’s solid, tested, proven knowledge and advice, and if you can put your pants on in the morning instead of offering them to a passer-by, you can do what needs to be done and enjoy it, for the rest of your life.

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

What to Do When She's "Mean" to You: Horseplay and "Picking" in Relationships and Marriage

Men frequently write to me complaining that their wives pick at them, needle them, push them to do things they don’t want to do, etc. How are you supposed to handle this? The answer might surprise you…

I get a lot of letters like the following, and I’ve addressed the issue in "
THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," but the frequency of these letters is scary. There are too many men who don’t recognize what this issue really is and how to deal with it, and families are literally coming apart at the seams because of this simple misunderstanding. Meet Jeff:

Hello David,

I need help. I haven’t yet read your book but I’ve been reading your newsletters for awhile and I think you can tell me this. My wife has picked up a bad habit of picking on me, making fun of me, being a smart-ass in front of our friends, etc. It’s really abrasive and embarrassing, and getting worse by the day. The more I ask her to stop, the more she does it, like she’s trying to push me into a fight. How can I stop it?

Thanks,
Jeff

Well Jeff, you slacking cheapskate, if you’d read my book you’d know! Just kidding! LOL! Seriously, she’s not trying to start a fight at all. She’s trying to get you to play with her! You’re boring her to tears, and she’s trying to bring you out of your shell.

Women like challenge, and they like a man to act like he “has a pair.” She’s challenging you to a verbal “joust” to have some fun. What she’s expecting from you is that you pick back at her, not in a mean, nasty, insulting way, but in that fun, naughty, pranksterish way that you probably cut up with your friends, at least at first, escalating it to get into chasing, tickling, playful pinching or spanking – you know, that kid stuff that you used to do when you drove her wild!

What’s happening now is that she’s trying harder and harder to provoke you into showing that you have a pair, which is effect punishment for not doing so all along. If you don’t do it, you’ll find her losing interest in you pretty soon, so you’d better be finding your sense of humor, fast.

And we are talking about humor here, no matter how pissy you might think she’s being. If she makes a smart crack about your big feet, make a smart crack about something that obviously IS NOT a problem; i.e., only make a remark about her big butt if she DOES NOT have a big butt and doesn’t obsess about having one. Find something to exaggerate to crack wise about so that it’s obvious that you’re playing, else you may strike a nerve and end up starting a fight while trying to play.

I cannot overstress how you need to exercise a little sensitivity here. If she stubs her toe and is limping around but not seriously injured or embarrassed about the accident, then calling her “gimpy” is fair game, but if she is crippled, or if there was something embarrassing about the injury, like she was in a public place, stubbed her toe and ended up dumping a cup of coffee on a white blouse in front of her boss because of it, “gimpy” is off limits, at least until see that she’s over the embarrassment, which will usually be if and when you see her smile or laugh a bit when talking about it with a girlfriend. The idea is to be obviously fun with your picking to give her a giggle and demonstrate that you are a playful guy, not some wuss who can’t take a joke and is afraid to dish one out for her or a jerk who is retaliating and being mean instead of going along with the joke.

Women don’t really want that much from us, guys. It’s just that what they want is stuff that almost nobody is teaching these days, as we talked about with the Superman example yesterday. However, I am teaching it, after learning it from some gurus before me and adapting and expanding that by working with several hundred married women and their husbands, and I’ll teach you if you want to learn.

So how about it? Are you ready to learn what may turn out to be the most valuable lessons of your life? Remember all those jokes you cracked about nobody ever being able to understand women, or know what they want, or what they’re saying, or how to pass all those damnable tests and traps they’re always laying for us? I could give you the old “be the first kid on your block to” spiel, but it doesn’t really matter if you’re first. What matters is that you’re successful, as quickly as you can get there.

The quickest path to lasting success in your relationship is to go to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and download your copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," and then just reading it and putting it to work. You’ll not find too many opportunities where you can have so much fun being so successful, if you find any at all like this one, so get busy.

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Lessons From the Past About Women, Relationships and Marriage

Many lessons from the past, before the media decided to attempt the castration of our gender, are being lost, things that our fathers and grandfathers knew from childhood about women and keeping them happy. Tune in to see a biggie…

One of your fellow readers, truly one of the sharpest of the whole gang of you, sent me this little pearl of wisdom:

You might point this out to your readers someday - an idea I got from one of my son's movies:

Clark Kent and Superman are the same guy, but Lois Lane is only attracted to Superman - Clark is someone she can only see as a friend. A little story we all learned so young it's permanently part of our thought process!

How profound! And how sad, that we’ve seen that story and that double image for so long and so many of us have been unable to make that connection until this moment. Superman acted as he did in the guise of Clark Kent to kill Lois Lane’s attraction for him. Think about that!

He was nice, agreeable, indecisive and ultimately left decisions up to her, never assertive, never took the lead on anything, never initiated conversations – the consummate wuss! And he was the same guy as Superman, the guy she couldn’t stop thinking about.

“Oh, but that was a comic strip,” you say! Sure it was, written by men of the early and middle 20th century, before the wussification movement of the late 60’s through the present. These men who wrote that comic strip and did those shows (it was in black and white for a long time, and if memory serves, was on radio long before it was ever on television) knew about attraction because it wasn’t politically incorrect at that time to acknowledge that there are distinct and delightful differences between the sexes that can enrich any relationship if the partners in that relationship understand them.

Decisive man of action, or nerd who talks to his feet through his hand – which one do you think any woman would go for? It sickens me to think about the hero images being painted for our kids today. We had Superman, the Lone Ranger, Babe Ruth, Lou Gherig, The Green Hornet, The FBI Guys, James Bond, etc., and what do they have? Barney, the Teletubbies, and that man’s man of the world, Sponge Bob Squarepants?

And it doesn’t get any better if you look at adult films. You may recall from the editorial in the “Where Have All the Real Man Gone” editorial quoted in the “Break-Up Busting 101” E-mail Series and free report that Gary Cooper, John Wayne, Chuck Norris, Clint Eastwood, etc., have been replaced by Demi Moore and Angelina Jolie, with our gender being represented by Will Farrell, Hugh Grant, etc. Real fine examples of attraction-building heroes, huh?

Gents, it’s like this: A woman’s greatest enemy in the world is boredom, bar none. Wussy men who won’t act like a man, take the lead, make decisions, etc., are boring. When she gets bored, she picks fights, then has affairs, then leaves if you don’t finally get the message. It’s really just that simple, and Ladies, please feel free to comment on this to help me get these men to see that this is as big an issue to you as their job security is to them!

You need to know how this works, and you need to know how to listen to and speak “girly-ese” so that when your partner starts trying to tell you that you are boring her (and you can bet the farm that she will, whether she wants to or not!), you can respond appropriately in a timely manner and head off the trouble that is going to follow.

I can and will teach you, as hundreds of women have voluntarily taught me, if you’ll jump over to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and download your copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage." It’s easy, it’s enjoyable, it’s easily affordable, and it’s guaranteed, so you have no excuse. The earlier you do, the easier it is, so stand up and take action now, or maybe you like making life hard on yourself…

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Monday, June 30, 2008

Even 40 Years Isn't Too Late to Improve a Relationship or Marriage

A reader who has been married for forty years demonstrates that it’s never too late to fix common relationship problems, even forty-year old problems, if you know what to do and just do it.

There have been a lot of new readers sign on lately (welcome aboard!), so for the benefit of you newbies, I want to start by saying that while I get a lot of e-mails with success stories, I don’t share them with the rest of you unless there is some specific lesson that you can learn from it. I never liked receiving such e-mails (or reading blog posts) that said nothing more than, “So-and-so did good and you can too if you buy now,” and I’m not going to bore you with them either. Yes, I have a book to sell if you need it, but I have a lot to teach you outside of that book, too.

I also want to urge you to grab my free browser toolbar to have instant access to blog posts, flash messages, a reader chat room, great stuff like pop-up blocking and Internet radio, games and gadgets, and other goodies. Some of us are having a lot of fun with it, and you should join us.

This story started in April 2006 when “Roger” (name has been changed to protect his privacy) subscribed to this newsletter and in early June 2006 bought a copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," a few days after that. He had a little trouble downloading the e-book because of Windows security features (128-bit SSL for you computer geeks) that had not been installed on his computer, and in the course of getting it straightened out he dropped a few details of his situation. I’ll quote some of them here to give you a feeling for where he started at the time of his purchase:

Hi David

Many thanks for your help in this. What little I saw indicates it is going to be a very useful reference book and answer some questions concerning things that happened years ago. We have been married for 40 years this year, but it has been a rocky road and still is occasionally.

Regards,
Roger

Hi David,
Your recent letter concerning your friend Matt has made me realize just how common such a situation can be. I have been married for almost 40 years with two daughters and three grandsons and for as long as I can remember, I have never been able to please her; always there is something else that she wants me to do. I realized this many years ago and now always make a joke of it. So as fast as I complete one project, she will have the next ready for me, sometimes before the first was finished! I just add them to my list of tasks these days, some will get done, some will never be done. My problem is that she has a real knack of making me feel guilty.

This is not just about projects, it could be a social event or something she simply does not approve of, but always I have a guilt feeling when I refuse. The feelings haunt me and I end up doing what she wants sooner or later in most cases. If I argue or try to discuss, I am accused of always wanting to control her. I am driven to succeed because I want the quiet life and the brownie points that come from approval. I am told she sings my praises to others, but never to me.

To give you some idea how it works, she wants me to tidy the garage so it can have a workbench, all the machines and space for me to work. She tells everyone how it will improve things for me, but she also wants me to move all the items stored in the garden shed to the garage so that I can demolish the shed. Then I am expected to build her a summerhouse in the space, not a prefabricated one, a purpose-built brick and tile fantasy!

In my spare time I am expected to remodel and transform the gardens, paint the house, build a new two-level deck across the back, turn the second bathroom into a "wet" room and keep the maintenance of our other two houses up to scratch! I must finish the kitchen sometime too! In all this she has ignored the plans we had to convert the garage into a dining room whilst we built a new garage with attached workshop. Maybe this is because her new greenhouse currently occupies the site?

David, I am tired! I work a 9-hour shift, six days per week and generally get just one day off. I cannot afford to pay someone else to do the work as I am still clearing debts from a failed business venture and I am earning just a tad above the minimum wage. I am reading the book you kindly emailed to me after it got lost in transit when I downloaded, but have yet to put it into practice.

Recently she took a vacation with my daughter and grandsons at one of our cottages. It was tiring, but different and the boys were easy, spending their time surfing. What was I doing? I spent my evenings and a rare weekend off work, repairing and painting the beach hut! Trying to please her again! My own vacations are limited and restricted to the extent we cannot have time together and if I take time off without her, I am expected to work on one of the projects!

I am considering building her a dungeon! :-))

There is a lot more to this than meets the eye, but I will not bore you with all the details of the problems in our marriage. I do not give up easily, but there are times when I seriously consider cutting my losses. Divorce is out of the question as we both feel it might make the other happy!

Any advice you can offer would be appreciated. I simply want time to complete a few things on the list without her adding items faster than I can delete them! I can live without the approval for completed projects, but it would be nice if the feelings of guilt could be stopped too.

Thanks for listening
Kind regards,
Roger

Do you see what’s been going on here? Roger’s been married to this woman 40 years, and has been tested and tested and tested to see if he’ll stand up to his bratty wife’s whims. Think about this: If they’ve been married 40 years, he’s around 60 years old, still working a 54-hour work week, and she’s dominating every free minute he has. When he tries to stand up to her, she guilt-trips him into complying anyway.

I sent Roger a brief bit of encouragement, pointing out that she could only make him feel guilty if he allowed her to do so, and that from his description of his situation, he could easily take charge and turn things around after he had finished reading "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage" and knew how to position himself and interpret his wife’s words and actions to separate the whims and tests from the legitimate issues that she really expected his full attention and cooperation on.

Three weeks passed, and then I receive this in response to the lesson on attitude (the reader who chastised me and ended his subscription because I was boring him by providing TOO MUCH valuable information free of charge):

Hi David,
The guy who wrote complaining you were too verbose, is never going to listen to women! He has missed the point completely and seems ill-educated concerning a number of matters, which makes you wonder why he signed up in the first place. As you say, the winners listen, read and learn.

I am putting some of the advice contained in your book into practice, with some spectacular results and a lot of amusement. There is a long way to go, especially after 40 years, but I can feel the difference.

I thought you might also be amused by a couple of little anecdotes. The first concerning the first time I listened as she went around the house, to tell me about her day. Instead of requesting that she comes to the point, I allowed her to ramble on as she wanted, I asked occasional questions, nodded now and then, made comments and all the time I was making eye contact. Not once did I try to fix anything and after about 30 minutes of this, she suddenly stopped speaking and stared at me. I asked what was wrong, only to be told that I was behaving strangely and had not walked off when I got bored because she did not come to the point!

I simply grinned at her and said I was simply listening to her experiences of the day!

Since then, I have repeated this procedure and it has resulted in her being much more relaxed and a lot more helpful to me.

I also spotted a recent test of my resolve following which she behaved like a spoiled brat. I forget now what it was about, but I know I explained my reasoning and asked if she had any other thoughts, but warned if she continued to behave like a spoilt child I would put her across my knee and give her a good spanking! I then grinned and made a grab for her, but she was too quick and ran off laughing! Not long ago this would have degenerated into a full blown row.

As I said a long way to go and a lot more to introduce, but results are coming faster than anticipated. Thank you.

Enjoy your day
Regards
Roger

I don’t know about you, but in my experience, heading off even one spoiled brat tantrum and turning it into an attraction-building exercise like that would be worth the time and effort to read a whole encyclopedia of e-books, and he only read one! And what’s really cool is that Roger will now be able to do that every single time the situation arises, and will be able to take charge when real issues arise and get through them with respect and cooperation instead of a “full blown row” as well! Knowledge is indeed power, Gentlemen, the power to shape your environment, your day and your destiny..

Now, get this into perspective. Forty years of bad behavior creates a lot of inertia – the strong tendency of things to keep doing what they are doing until acted upon by an opposing force of equal or greater magnitude. In behavior, we call it habit. Roger’s wife has a forty-year old habit of being a brat and pitching a fit. Roger HAD a forty-year old habit of putting up with it to keep the peace. In under three weeks, he learned enough to break a forty-year old pattern of bad behavior and turn it into a positive event (that had SERIOUS positive repercussions in the bedroom that night – and there’s another thing for you to ponder: a healthy and fun “intimate” life at age 60 after being together 40 years! Can you imagine?).

The lesson? It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been a wuss, or thought that giving in to all your wife’s whims was what you needed to do to get along, or how long you’ve been going about communicating with her the wrong way, it’s all correctable, if you know what to do.

You don’t have to live out the rest of your life having someone you love drive you nuts with control issues, bratty behavior, dramatic fits, talking for hours and seemingly saying nothing, treating you like a child instead of a husband, being bored with your bedroom life (or having none at all), or any of those common problems (other than incompatibility, which unfortunately can only be fixed by divorce) that established couples complain of so commonly that they’re all as cliché as the image of a knight in shining armor on a white horse.

Just learn what to do, then do it. Roger’s no dunce by a long shot, but you have to agree that if Roger can overcome 40 years of bad behavior in a few weeks, while working that 54-hour work week and doing everything else he has to do, the odds are pretty good that anybody, including you, can do it in your own relationship or marriage, no matter how long you’ve been together.

So give it a shot! Jump over to
http://www.makingherhappy.com and download your copy of "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," and learn what you need to know to fix what needs fixing, and just do it! (Nike really struck gold with that slogan, didn’t they? It’s a powerful statement, and an even more powerful attitude, one every real man has and every man and woman alive should have.)

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Pain and Clear Thinking Don't Mix, Especially in Relationships and Marriage

A reader’s letters over a three-month period demonstrate how the pain and stress of a troubled relationship or break-up can kill your ability to think clearly and make you very vulnerable to having your buttons pressed by people trying to help you, and how you can recover if you choose to.

I want to get away from the subject of break-ups for awhile, but I have to give you this one last lesson before we get completely away from the subject, because this level of stress may happen to you someday and I need to prepare you for it.

Fair warning, this is a little longer than usual because I’m quoting several e-mails, but men and women alike can learn a lot from this if you’ll take a few extra minutes to read it.

Fights, fear, insecurity about your future, etc., those things that eat at you when your relationship isn’t going well or has ended, are a lot more destructive than most people imagine. Yes, it’s obvious that it hurts and makes you lose sleep, but the degree to which it can inhibit logical thought and even make you lash out at those who want to help you through tough times is not so obvious.

I’m going to share with you three letters, all written by the same reader, two of which were written within less than a week of his subscribing to this newsletter, and the third one today. Bear with me, as the point will become very clear toward the end. Meet J., a man who has been in a lot of pain but is obviously finding his way out of it and back to mental clarity and stability:

(His first letter, captioned “ohmigod,” received after he had read only one issue of this newsletter:)

astounding

does anyone actually believe any of this?

so - if your partner is bored of you, its your fault

my parents told me that only boring people get bored

its you, the man's job, to dance attendance on her and make her feel special

just what kind of relationship do your readers have with their women - and what kind of woman is it who lounges around like a spoiled teenager expecting to be "swept off her feet" by her man

maybe if she made an effort to find stimulating shared experiences and PUTTING SOMETHING INTO the relationship, instead of seeing her husband as some kind of personal satisfaction service, she might not be quite the miserable self-centered bitch you think all women are

holy cow, get a grip - if you REALLY think this kind of woman is the best a man can get you're lost lost lost buddy

kind regards,

J

Kind regards, huh? I didn’t know it until later, but he had just come out of a bad relationship, and pretty much got the meaning of the newsletter he read entirely backwards, as any of you who have been reading my newsletters longer than a couple of days already realize. It was pretty obvious that he was angry and in pain, especially in the level of sarcasm in his writing, but I wasn’t yet sure that it was a relationship at the core of his problem.

I wrote back to tell him so, and not realizing that he had just been through a break-up and was looking for an outlet to ventilate, replied with a fairly short and demure response:

Good morning, J.,

I'm sorry, but you have taken whatever it is that you're responding to so far out of context that I can't even determine what post or newsletter you might be speaking of. I don't ever speak of fault, except to tell men and women not to preoccupy themselves with fixing fault and blame, and to take responsibility for whatever they may be able to improve in their relationship instead.

As for being part of the problem, yours is the first negative comment I have received from anyone since I began this, and I can forward you hundreds of e-mails from readers of both my newsletter and my book where these people are telling me that they have turned their relationships completely around and that they are now better than they have ever been, including their original honeymoon period. I can only guess that you either have a hot button that was pressed by something you read or that this is yet another case of two peoples being separated by a common language.

I appreciate you taking the time to write, but frankly, I might have been a lot more interested in what you have to say had you exercised a bit of tact in lieu of sarcasm about how I write and where I live. I hope you find whatever it is that you are missing, because you are obviously not a happy man.

Regards,
David

…and he replied with the following, captioned “OK” the next day:

read your latest contribution with interest

of course men shouldn't habitually complain about how little support they get from their wives

but its my experience that men are caught in a double bind, their women are allowed to be behave like dependent irrational little girls and be as assertive and independent as they like - they are encouraged to be both - "girls" and "women" - and woe betide any man who questions their right to be which they want to be at any given time

men on the other hand are expected to be supportive and independent at the same time, and find their support away from the relationship - "Big Guys"

support, unfortunately, is often needed at inconvenient times

so men are screwed, not by women, but by blogs like yours which tells them to stop being a "wuss" and insists that its their fault that they can't be superheroes and not have ordinary human needs like everyday love

well, buddy, you seem to be part of the problem and not the solution

and you use 10 words (badly written American corporate-speak at that) where one will do

keep up the good work!

kindest fraternal greetings

J

"Keep up the good work!" and "Kindest fraternal greetings"??? At this point it was pretty obvious that he’d been through a break-up or two, was awash in a sea of negative emotions, and needed somebody to rough him up a bit to wake him up to the fact that he was indeed reacting emotionally and needed to pull back and look at what he was doing, attempting to alienate me with sarcastic remarks and possibly others who were interested in helping him.

I hate having to “read somebody the riot act” as the saying goes, but every man knows that there’s nothing like getting stomped on a bit to make you realize that somebody does care about what’s going on with you, else they would just leave you, exposed and vulnerable, to wallow in pain and self-pity, so I sent him the following:

J.,

You'd probably be a much happier person if you spent a little more time listening and learning and a little less time trying to argue with people to defend the mistakes you've made in your life. People use all of this, every day, and they write letters to confirm how well it works. Before it was ever published, it was tested on over a hundred couples with complete success. The information I use concerning attraction is based in part on information that people like John Alanis, David D'angelo, F.J. Shark, and Ross Jeffries (dating gurus) proved effective as much as ten years or more before I ever took it up and adapted it for use by people in committed relationships.

I couldn’t care less what your parents taught you. Mothers teach their sons to be "nice guys" and kiss women's behinds, try to buy their affection, and dump all the decisions in their laps with regularity, because it's what they think they want, but when they get it, it turns them off completely. Making a woman feel special is done by listening and responding, and by acting like a man, not by "dancing attendance on her" or any other form of serving her.

I have no idea where you get this idea that I said anything about a woman lounging around like a spoiled teenager. Women do day-dream frequently throughout the day about feeling sexual attraction. It's why they read romance novels, and why they start fights when men ignore them. It’s how they prevent boredom if left to their own devices, and is far preferable to affairs and such. Women do try much harder than men to put something into relationships, but it usually comes after attraction is triggered and after they feel commitment. I don't know of any mentally healthy women who see their husband as some sort of personal satisfaction service, and I don’t think they are miserable or self-centered.

This is the last time I'm going to waste my time writing you. You've read one of my newsletters, apparently half-assed because you have no clue what I am telling people, and you're trying to argue with me that what I'm teaching doesn't work when (a) you don’t even know what I'm teaching, (b) if you were such an expert, you wouldn't be reading anything I've written to start with, you'd be getting rich selling what you know, and (c) everybody who has and is using it is doing so with outstanding success. Nobody who has ever used my information has ever said anything about it except how well it works, and nobody who has ever used it has asked for a refund, and I extend a satisfaction guarantee for a full year after purchase, so if they wanted to do so, they would have. That speaks for itself, as does the reality of the results that my material is giving those who use it.

Your options now are to either read and learn or argue with somebody else, because I don't really care what you think, what you agree with, or what your parents told you, and until you understand what I'm saying and have tried it, you're not in any position to criticize it. What I'm teaching came straight from working with hundreds of women to find out what they respond to, and then working with their men to make sure that men can understand and do what is required. It's reality, there is no arguing with it, and if you don't like it, you can sod off and be miserable while the rest of us are enjoying a great relationship with our wives and girlfriends. I don’t deal in opinions and have no time for armchair pundits; either get in the game or get off the field.

David


I didn’t hear back from J. until for awhile, and he did exactly what every real man does when confronted with such a wake up call. He dug in, paid attention, found his way out of the pain and frustration, and put his brain back in charge of his well-being, proving to himself and the rest of the world that the pain of even the worst break-up can be very temporary if you can keep your wits about you, with or without the help of friends and other concerned parties. This message was received captioned “from your (former) tormentor”:

Hi David,

Remember me? I was the guy who pissed you off a few months ago.

Well, I still haven't read your book, but I have been reading your daily emails and I am not too proud to admit when I have made a misjudgment. I'm looking forward to reading your book, but a lot of what you say in your emails makes rock solid sense to me (and at 41, I've had enough unhappy girlfriends/bad relationships to realise that I must be getting something wrong).

I'm going to recommend your project to friends, read your book and come back with some constructive comments (I am presumptuous to say). I think you come from a good place.

I latched onto "makingherhappy" in a bad way, because, in my last relationship, I spent a huge amount of energy trying to make an immature girl happy and made myself very unhappy and ill in the process.

Here's a thought though: I have to go into a workplace where this girl will be. Ex-partners and work, now there's a thorny issue. Maybe not for you, but it’s a tricky one nonetheless.....

with all good wishes,

J

So, J., no, you didn’t piss me off, and this time I believe you when you send “best wishes.” And you’ll know how to handle the girl in the workplace after you’ve read "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," so don’t worry.

You see, Folks? When you’re having relationship troubles and feeling like your guts are being ripped out at every turn, you need a release for that frustration, and the most likely and unfortunate outlet is someone who is trying to help you precisely because you have their attention. Remember that, and guard yourself against it, because not everyone is able to recognize that an outburst is an act of reaching out for help, and you have to admit that it’s a very poor way to ask for help in any case.

What I recommend when anyone is having relationship or other problems that breed frustration, fear, pain, etc., is ACTION! Don’t sit back wondering what will happen next and waiting for it to happen. Dig in and find the cause of the problem and do something about it. It’s an excellent outlet for all that negative energy because it converts it into something constructive, and it has the added benefit of MAKING THE PROBLEM GO AWAY! You can’t beat that with a stick, can you?

Whether you’re facing nuisance or disaster, the key to making it go away is two-fold: knowing what to do and then doing it. “Think things through, then follow through,” was famed U.S. Air Force test pilot Chuck Yeager’s “six-word formula for success,” and it works. “Thinking things through” in your relationship requires a sense of reason and a solid working knowledge of what you and your partner want and need and how you can best communicate.

Yep, that’s in "THE Man’s Guide to Great Relationships and Marriage," which you will find at
http://www.makingherhappy.com. The best news is that if you read it before you have problems, you’ll likely never have any because you’ll work together to keep them out of your relationship, but if you do have problems, you can fix them. Just don’t alienate everybody you know while you’re trying to get through it.

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!

David Cunningham