As a “nice” guy (i.e. needy), where do you start? What I have done is identify what I would like to become. First let us explore what traits are unattractive to women — neediness, clingyness, jealousy, weak emotionally, too affectionate, too sensitive, too fat or too skinny, no ambition, always around, always wanting attention, too complimentary, too indecisive, too much TV, too much video game playing, not helping enough in the house or too much, slobby dresser, poor personal hygiene, begs for sex, etc. Now let us look at what most women find attractive — confidence, humor, being fit, well groomed, well dressed, good hygiene, a little cocky, enjoys his work, has friends and interests outside of marriage, helps around the house when necessary, does not treat her like a fragile snowflake, good kisser, good in bed, focuses on his mission not his wife, expects sex from his wife. This kind of man draws his woman towards him. She seeks his attention and enjoys it when she gets it.
So much of this can seem counterintuitive to the needy husband. We think that if we do more to help her, to shower her with praise, to being more affectionate, more romantic we can reach her heart. It is unfortunate that human nature does not allow this to work. We act out of desperation feeling anxiety if we don’t do these things but actually the opposite is true. I have found relationships can be confusing and counterintuitive. You rush towards someone, they walk away. You turn and walk away, they come back towards you. All those books with marriage advice are predicated on the belief that the wife is “in love” with the husband and seeks his romantic attention. If you are a needy husband taking this advice has grave consequences. What your wife actually desires is space to breathe and for you to be strong. Consider the following examples:
1) Your wife arrives home from work. You are waiting there for her. She is a little late. As you waited you think about where she could be and what she is doing. You are unnerved by her tardiness and you are on edge. She comes in and can tell right away that you are upset but that you are trying not to show it. You want to ask why she was late but you know you can’t. She withdraws from you because she senses how you feel and it upsets her. This has happened many times before and at this point she is nearing the point of not caring how you feel because she has done nothing wrong. She feels you are acting like a child and treating her like one.
2) You wife arrives home from work late. You are not waiting. You are doing an activity that you enjoy. She actually has to come seek you out. You did not even notice the time. You are happy to see her and express it but you continue to do your activity. She now feels she has some time to decompress from work. She misses you but understands that you are busy and will be available soon. Being unavailable creates the space to allow hunger to grow.