Men and women are different. Duh! But how different are they? The popular book, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus attempted to explain how men and women are different. I have come to explain the differences between men and women using the phrase, “Head and Bed.”
A Woman’s Place is in a Man’s Head
Where in a man’s life does a woman find a place, safety, security and belonging?
As a man shares his thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams, aspirations, seeks her thoughts and opinions about issues, has meaningful conversations with her, she has a sense of belonging and significance in his life. Equally, when he only has eyes for her, tells her how beautiful, intelligent and loved she is, she feels connected and cared for by him. A man’s humor, playfulness and wittiness is another way she finds belonging and meaning in his thoughts or head.
Pornography, gazing, staring or gawking at other women and sharing more of his views, perspective or thoughts with another woman, she may feel threatened, hurt and often betrayed. Comparing a man’s head to a beautifully appointed room, it’s a man’s responsibility to appoint that room with her colors, furnishings and maintain the room so that she feels comfortable and can rest there. This is expressing yourself in kind and gentle ways so she knows you treasure and cherish her. Allowing other women into your “head space” shares her place with other women when she may not have invited them into her place in your life.
A Man’s Place is in a Woman’s Bed
At the same time, where in a woman’s life does a man find meaning, security and belonging? In a completely different way, men find belonging, significance, place and meaning in a woman’s life when she opens herself to him sexually. Intercourse, in the context of a committed and exclusive relationship (marriage), both establishes and reveals the sacred bond a man wants with his partner. Assuming the physical position necessary for intercourse expresses vulnerability and susceptibility to her partner. Historically, men have been known to kill other men for being in their place. Obviously, this does not justify murder, but it does indicate the significance of this place for men.
Clearly, intercourse has been cheapened in a variety of ways so that from a societal perspective, it has far less significance as a place of belonging and meaning when women are objectified and dehumanized for the sake of sex. Both men and women are responsible for this just in different ways. Men, mistakenly thinking that jokes, groping, making casual references to sex is attractive to women, when in fact, most women feel objectified. These behaviors are incredibly unattractive, immature and repugnant to women because they are self-serving for the man.
As men assume responsibility for providing an uncontaminated, loving, caring, nurturing place for a woman thinking of her, only having eyes for her and preserving her place in his life, trust begins to build between the sexes. Equally, receiving this effort on a man’s part, believing the best about him, allows a woman to open herself to him sexually trusting they are mutually invested in the relationship, just in different ways.