dating and singlehood

why does he love you

Recently, someone who has been paying no attention whatsoever to me, obviously, sent me an article from my favorite source – eHarmony. It was titled “What Makes a Man Fall in Love?” Now normally, I would roll my eyes, guffaw, shudder, and delete, but I’m in a good mood and slightly curious as to what does make a man fall in love, so I click. And surprisingly enough, it’s actually really good, sound advice for singles everywhere – particularly geared to women but there’s stuff for men to think about too. the quotes are in bold or italic – everything else is from my brain ūüôā

Why Does He Fall for One Woman Over Another?¬†She’s the Total Package

He has to be ‘captivated’ by the total package of her…her personality, her brain, her body, her smell, her unknowable, mysterious allure…his brain has to feel he can’t live without her…that she must be a part of his future!¬† – Louann Brizendine, M.D., author of The Male Brain

The answer doesn‚Äôt sound sexy, but a man falls in love when his feelings for a woman reach a critical mass. He spends time with her and he sees that she is kind, loving, affectionate, loyal, fun, sexy, and of a positive spirit in quantities that reach a certain weight. One day he thinks, ‘Wow, I love this woman.’ He may not know why, but his mind/heart have taken a look at her in an in-depth way. –¬†Grant Langston, Sr. Director, eHarmony

You could group the quotes above under a label of “chemistry” but that usually goes the wrong way in people’s heads and not the way I intend it. It’s this je ne sais quoi – this mysterious equation of inherent properties¬†of one element mixed with another and you get some kind of reaction. And in keeping with the chemistry lab analogy, a true scientist will test it again and again, in different increments or under different circumstances to see how the properties react and change or blow up. I loved chem lab. Not the math so much though.

But what this also points out is that you women should be awesome. You should be spending the time as a single person learning about your strengths and weaknesses and working on the things that you are unhappy with and being the kind of person who everyone else, when they learn you’re not taken, go wow that’s surprising, instead of well no surprise there.

He feels like he can make her happy

Ultimately what men and women want is the same — they want to feel connected, they want to feel attraction, and to experience passion. A man is looking for a woman with a smile. Men bond with women when men feel successful in making them happy. A woman needs to focus less on making her man happy — and focus more on how he makes her happy.¬†– John Gray, Ph.D., author of the Mars Venus Book series

This is huge I think. How many times have you seen it in a couple you know? You’re out at dinner, say, and everything he says she beats down or criticizes or has to add “her side” of the story or makes fun of him – or vice versa. When you think someone is impossible to please and you either become a defeatist and just “yes, dear” all the time, or eventually you are going to run away and look for someone who appreciates and understands you. Because no one wants to be with someone who is sour and critical and makes you feel beat up and bruised all the time.

And I don’t think that most people TRY to be a beast to get along with, well, there are some for sure. But I think that especially for us women we can get pretty high maintenance without realizing it. He didn’t call when he said he would so he’s a total jerk and doesn’t respect me and so therefore I will hold it against him and bring it up whenever he is talking. It’s the general trend we created some time in the 80s I think. It doesn’t mean we women need to pander and cater to his ego and feed him grapes, but it does mean that if you are with a man you could forego criticizing for a few hours, than do that. If you’re with someone you feel the need to make fun of or criticize or give lots and lots of helpful, albeit unsolicited, advice to, then you should probably move on. And if he doesn’t make you laugh at all, definitely take that as a sign to move on.

The Way He Feels Around Her

A man falls in love when he feels like he could be a super hero with you in his life. When he feels accepted, appreciated and understood, and knows he can make you happy…he will be yours. Oh…and throw in that he thinks you’re hot! – Relationship Coach Bobbi Palmer, Date Like a Grownup

And so when you don’t feel beat up and you feel like you can take over the world, with or without Pinky, just because that person makes you feel that way, that will be the one you stick with, and possibly The One.

When She’s Open to Love

A man will fall in love when you give off the signals that you are truly looking for — and ready for — lasting love. The cues you give off are everywhere: Do you allow yourself to be vulnerable and really let him see who you are? Are you confident in your sense of self? Do you know what you want from life and where you are headed? Another key element in showing you’re ready for love is having a strong sense of respect, both for yourself and for him. Men want to know that you think they are worthy of love. They also need to see that you know you are deserving of love. Men will fall in love with someone who is open, receptive, and ready to be loved.¬†– Dr. Shannon Kolakowski, Licensed Psychologist and Author

It’s a pretty common conversation I’ve had with all kinds of women from all kinds of walks of life – are you really ready to be in The Relationship? we think we are always ready but the truth is we are not really all that ready. Most if not all of the women I know are really strong independent totally capable women who NEED a man like they NEED another pair of shoes. I mean we DO need another pair of shoes, right?

but often, like shoes, it’s that moment or that particular dress and then we just go on to the next pair and we don’t really want to give up anything or change anything about our lifestyle or relinquish any kind of control over anything. I don’t want to have to rearrange my schedule or give up a great career or my flexibility.

And on the other end of the spectrum, a man doesn’t necessarily want a woman who is totally desperate to be loved and is a doormat and will do anything and everything she can do be whatever he wants. So some where in there is a balance of being strong enough to be alone but recognizing when a man comes along who makes being alone second best.

She Says Yes to the Game of Life

Finding a person who fits into his life without huge disruptions is important. Men may like to ogle high-maintenance women, but they’re not the women they marry. A willingness to say, ‘Yes, I’ll try that’ — whether it’s trying exotic food he likes, sports he plays, places he wants to go — makes a man fall hard. It’s not to say that you have to love everything he loves…but at least you’re willing to try!¬†–¬†Cathleya Schroeckenstein, Editor-in-Chief, Weddingbee

This is also about being open and having a love for life and discovering new things. But it also has to do with the people involved – you should have the same general threshold for exploration. I dated someone who never tried anything and didn’t really want to go any where. It was a total drag. But then I dated someone else who was constantly bored and chasing after new experiences and couldn’t go on vacation without seeing EVERYthing there and he’d no sooner get home and be looking for his next destination. Again, balance in this as well as being of the same general mindset of being agreeable to the same things.

Like Attracts Like

Attraction, compatibility, and that magical spark that makes you think someone was made just for you.¬†–¬†Erina Lee, Senior Research Scientist, eHarmony

The key of course here is to hold onto that thought for years down the road when you are thinking “what the heck was I thinking?” There was something there, but it’s gone now or it’s been choked to death by the reality of life and the drudgery of our day to day existence.¬†And like a journey, we’re bound to discover new roads and find that the things that once attracted us are long gone and there must be something more that binds us together.

There’s Purpose and Passion

No other emotion seems more mysterious than love. At it’s core, falling in love is driven by our desire for happiness. It’s often sparked by physical attraction; it lasts with deep points of connection that leave him feeling purposeful, fulfilled, attractive, energized and…loved.¬†–¬†Executive and Life Coach Barbara Waxman

I’ve always really liked the idea of the Muse. It sounds a little corny, but I do believe nothing inspires people better than other people. I remember sitting in a poetry reading in college – yes I went to those – and just sitting and listening to everyone made me immediately go home and write several poems that just poured out. Some of it was pure crap, mind you, but a lot of it wasn’t half bad and expressed exactly what I wanted/needed to. When it comes to the person you love, I feel strongly that when you are together there should be that kind of energetic creativity, synergy, where you encourage each other to create and achieve, and as often as possible create either together or at least inspire each other to create on their own. There’s nothing like dreaming out loud together and giving each other ideas and even discussing differences in how you might do things because iron sharpens iron and all that.

It’s All Part of the Journey

Falling in love feels like an accidental occurrence to many people, but in spiritual terms it is not — it is the entrance point to love’s eternal journey.¬†– Deepak Chopra, M.D. and author of the new book Spiritual Solutions: Answers to Life’s Greatest Challenges

Ahhhh Deepak. I can’t agree with everything he says, but he sure is sweet. Truth is that love is the highest calling of our lives. The visible, physical example of God’s love for us displayed in some small scale in every marriage is a gift to us humanoids, who tend to miss this, though it stares us in the face every day. Every couple on earth is a very real expression of Jesus and his Bride here on earth – a working out of salvation if you will, where the very real struggles and heartaches of life come creeping in and are met with the perfect matchless Grace of God. It is no mistake that Paul in the book of Ephesians compels husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the Church, and the basis of all love is what you are willing to do, the lengths you will go to, the depths you will sink to, the heights you will climb and the widths you will cross to find it, win it, keep it and carry it home.

And of course I can’t go an entire blog post on love without being snarky…

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