What Men Want in a Relationship

Written by Rinatta Paries

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I have discovered a stark contrast between what each sex thinks the opposite sex wants from them, and what the opposite sex really does want.

What women think men want from them causes women to have resentment and anger toward men, and feel hopeless about ever developing a wonderful, warm, romantic partnership. What men think women want from them causes them much of the same feelings and frustration.

The sad part is that it does not have to be this way, if only we would realize that both men and women are human beings first and pretty much want the same thing. But, you don’t have to take my word for this.

I asked a number of men and women who are actively involved in personal growth and development what they want from a partner in order to build a great relationship. You will find their answers unexpected. Discover what men said they want from women as contrasted with what women think men want. You’ll also find tips for women to give men what they want, attract a great man, and create a wonderful relationship.

Honest communication is top priority for men. They want a woman who answers questions honestly, and perhaps even volunteers information. They want a woman who confidently asks for her wants and needs to be met. They want a woman who can see the truth and tell it like it is while communicating with kindness. Men want a woman who can communicate without being too critical, who cares about preserving his and her dignity.

Women think men want them to be superficial, to keep quiet about their needs or wants, and never to ask for anything. Women think men believe them to be too needy and too sensitive, and that men simply want women to get over it. Some women believe they do not have the permission to tell it like it is, that they will be rejected for speaking up.

A tip for women
Great men want and need straightforward, courageous communication without anger or criticism. One way to attract a great man and build a satisfying relationship is to learn how to communicate your truth and needs effectively.

2. Men want self-sufficient, secure, confident women.

Men want a woman to choose them out of want rather than out of desperation — either materially or emotionally. Men need to be wanted and needed by their partners, but they want their partners to have a separate identity. Men want a woman to be active and independent, to have her own friends and interests.
On the other hand, men treasure time spent with a loving partner.

Women think men don’t want women to need them. Women think men do not need or appreciate time spent together as a couple. Women believe that showing a man he is needed will turn him off and
possibly make him run away.

A tip for women
Men want what women want — a whole partner. One powerful way to attract a great man and build a vibrant relationship is to create a full, rewarding life for your own fulfillment.

3. Men want a manipulation-free relationship.

Men want no manipulation of any kind. They do not want to read their partner’s mind or try to interpret signals. They do not want to be forced to move faster in a relationship than they are ready. They do not want to be manipulated into taking all the blame for things gone wrong. They do not want to be on the receiving end of game playing.

Women think men want little or no communication, and the only way to get needs met is through manipulation. Women think men either need or want to be reminded that the relationship needs to move forward. Women think men don’t want or value praise and acknowledgment, and so tend to only verbalize criticism.

A tip for women
Men will not tolerate manipulation of any kind for any significant length of time. To attract a great man and build a wonderful relationship learn to ask without hesitation for what you want and need in every area of your life. Learn to be aware of his timing and his time-line. Learn how to acknowledge and bestow praise.

4. Men want growth, personal responsibility, and ownership.

Men want a partner who can laugh at herself and who has courage and strength. They want a woman who can see her part in relationship dynamics and own it. She has to be emotionally stable. Men want a woman who is developing herself personally, and who takes responsibility for her emotional experience.

Women think men only want to have a good time. Women think men have no interest in developing and growing a relationship or developing and growing themselves. Women think men want women who are super models, and that they never consider whether a
woman is emotionally mature, kind, supportive, or loving.

A tip for women
Men want women who are emotionally mature. Maturity does not mean lack of emotions. It does mean the ability to handle emotions responsibly. To attract a great man and build a long-term relationship, learn to take responsibility for your emotional experience and expression.

5. Men want fidelity and a commitment to the relationship.

Fidelity is an absolute must. In fact, men want a woman who does not have a “roaming eye” and who can wholeheartedly commit to the relationship. Many may define commitment as fidelity plus the willingness to work on the relationship — even when the going gets tough.

Women think that all men want is sex, and that men will leave a relationship for the next prettier face. Women think men cannot be trusted to be faithful. Women believe men do not want to work on a relationship; that when the going gets tough, they run.

A tip for women
Here is great news for those women who are resigned to the myth that all men cheat: infidelity and “a roaming eye” are as distasteful to men as they are to women. Great men know how to build a wonderful relationship, and they know fidelity is the main ingredient.

6. Men want women who know how men need to be treated.

Many women treat men in ways that diminish their egos, making them feel inadequate. Men would rather have more praise, more acknowledgment of what they do right, more acknowledgment that they are great guys who are loved and appreciated.

Women think men do not need them, do not value their opinion, their support, their praise. Women also think men do not care about many things important to women, which is why they criticize. Criticism is a way to verbalize resentment.

A tip for women
Most men want acknowledgment and appreciation from women. Learning to acknowledge instead of making your partner wrong is one of the most powerful relationship survival tools available to you.

© Rinatta Paries. Do you know how to attract your ideal mate? Do you know how to build a fulfilling relationship, or how to reinvent yours to meet your needs? Relationship Coach Rinatta Paries can teach you the skills and techniques to attract and sustain long-term, healthy partnerships. Visit www.WhatItTakes.com where you’ll find quizzes, classes, advice and a free weekly ezine. Become a “true love magnet”(tm)!

Now that you know what men want, what about what you want? The desire to love and be loved is the most basic human need. Do you know how deeply God loves you? You are beautiful, loved, and not alone. Take a minute to think about that – God loves you, and not because of what you do. You don’t need to act or look a certain way to be loved by God. He loves you unconditionally already. God created you and He is interested in the details of your life. God wants to have a close and personal relationship with you.

>>Here’s how you can start that relationship right now.

Can He Trust You with His Feelings?
Dynamic Sex: Unlocking the Secret to Love

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836 Responses to “What Men Want in a Relationship”

  • Aldo Aldo says:

    Celeste65, I am truly sorry to hear of your 10+ years of verbal abuse. No one should have to go through that. In fact, I would have counseled you to leave that situation, and wait to see what the Lord would have brought about. As long as we are seeking God’s will for us, we must trust Him to bring about what is best.

    May God continue to lead and guide you in the way in which He desires you to go.

  • Celeste65 says:

    In regards to my situation…
    I stayed for 10+ years after the abuse started …

  • Aldo Aldo says:

    Beckers, in answer to your question, “Yes, I have read the Bible from cover to cover,” and I am not be facetious when I say that. Also, I’m sorry that you misunderstood what I said in my reply to Celeste65, that “…each situation is different, and if the abused party has been praying and crying out to God, and believes she has heard from God, then who am I to say different.”

    I, also, am a believer “…not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” (2 Cor.3:6)

    My endeavor was not to prolong the suffering from the abuse Celeste65 was experiencing, but to make sure that she gave God enough time to work in her situation.

    Thank you for the Blogs you’ve written, which I’m sure are ministering to many of the abused women.

  • Celeste65 says:

    @Christie
    I can’t imagine what you are feeling or what it was like for you to be in an abusive relationship.
    I was not physically abused by my husband. His actions were insidious. What he said and did to me were behind closed doors. I didn’t tell my family and friends what was happening,which made a bad situation worse. Everyone who knew him thought he was a good man.
    If I appeared shell shocked the day after a nasty run in with my husband, he would look at me with an innocent, vacant expression. He acted like nothing happened.
    There were many times when I questioned my sanity.
    I’m not going to ramble on about how badly I felt about myself, how I thought God had abandoned me, and that nobody would believe me.
    It took me years to leave him.

    You are in my prayers.

  • Christie Frazier says:

    I was not expecting to read about “domestic violence” in this post. I have been prayer to God to help me understand my actions. I left as an action to a man who hurt me both physically (once) and emotionally over 10 years. Being left neglected in a relationship is the worst. Then an action to as he says, “politely grab my arms behind my back, and gently walk me to the back door to put me on the porch” and then I fell to my face without being able to break the fall, was an accident. I was hurt that night. Knew something bad had gone wrong. The action itself, to hold my hands behind my back, and put me on the porch was a violent act. The fall was an accident? I became the perpetrator in the family. He became the victim. A man of God stands up to the situation and begs if not once many times for the woman to forgive him. And when that doesn’t happen, the wounds of healing cannot begin to take place. God calls us to love one another. Not to wound emotionally or spiritually, physically or any other way.

  • Beckers says:

    Aldo,

    ALSO, getting out of an abusive situation is in fact a way to hold an abuser accountable. There are some people who will never acknowledge or admit their evil behaviour (even to themselves) without a serious wake up call. No person is called by God to be somebody else’s punching bag. We are called to speak the truth in love. Truthful love sounds like this: Your behaviour is ungodly and unhealthy. It is destructive to you and me. I am going to remove myself from this situation. When or if you are willing to be truthful about your behaviour and make a real change, then healing can begin. Until or unless this happens, separation is necessary.”

    And let’s not be naive, for most women that conversation would not even be possible. So the act of leaving would have to serve as the action to hold the perpetrator accountable.

    I think it wounds the heart of Jesus to see Christians who are so naive about this topic, re-victimizing women and children through their limited view of the Scriptures, and thereby enabling abusive men. This is not loving.

  • Beckers says:

    Aldo,

    Deep breath in…have you by any chance read the Scriptures from cover to cover? In the particular passage that you sight, Jesus references the hardness of men’s heart as the true reason for divorce. This is why divorce was permitted under the Mosaic Law. As Jesus states, it was not that way from the beginning, but we do not live in an ideal world. Jesus then says that ideally marital unfaithfulness is the only reason for divorce.
    Also, in Malachi, the Lord talks about how He hates it when a man covers himself with violence, and that HE HIMSELF stands as a witness between a man and the wife of his youth.

    Paul then later talks about how if a non-believer desires to leave the believer, the believer should let that person go. The believer is no longer under obligation to the law.

    The problem with so much of how modern day Christians talk about divorce, especially in light of abuse and violence is that espouses the LETTER of the law, instead of the heart. All of God’s laws have the purpose of relationship at the centre. It is not about the LETTER of the law, but the heart.

    When you look at the Bible as an entire entity, and have a deep understanding of it as a whole, I do not think that one could possibly pronounce that it is God’s will for a woman to stay in an abusive relationship. There is nothing godly or holy about that; the right thing is to get out with God’s grace, and for that woman to experience the grace and healing power of Christ through the church. The perpetrator should be held accountable, with the hope that he will repent and turn from his evil ways. If he will not, then it is the hardness of that man’s heart (his unwillingness to turn from his wicked ways) that has brought that marriage to an end, and he will given an account before God to that end.

    The same goes for female on male violence and abuse.

    I believe an in-depth study of the heart and nature of God through the Scriptures as a whole will reveal this to be sound advice. Not perfect by far, but a start…Mercy triumphs over judgement, the spirit of the law not the letter, and the fact that we live in a broken world full of hard hearts.

  • Elkay Elkay says:

    Coco, I am sorry about your abusive background because that is so wrong and unfair and maybe it affected your feelings about this article. Our good Lord must have healed you some since you still want a marriage and want it to be a loving relationship with good communications.

    I don’t think the author was trying to tell a woman that if she did not have or express that list of 6 characteristics, then her marriage would not be good and it was her fault. What she found in her survey of “experts” is that what (some) men want is unexpected or surprising in view of what is popularly thought.

    I know many long-time married couples and I can honestly say than in loving relationships, the only one of the 6 characteristics that would lead to disaster is infidelity and even that does not have to lead to divorce. Believe me, both men and women have shortcomings in the other 5 areas but adjusting to or overcoming the shortcomings is a big part of what makes a great marriage.

    And then, self-sacrifice is a key factor in overcoming the shortcomings and achieving what Katheryn rightly posted back on Sept. 7 . . . she said ” instead of being concerned with what a man wants out of a relationship or even what a woman wants, it is mostly about how your marriage can be a means of glorifying God”. So as you go forward, consider very carefully how a future mate relates to God and trust God to help you both deal with the other’s shortcomings. May God guide and bless your future.

  • Coco says:

    With all due respect. This article makes women seem like crazy monsters and men seem like Gods we need to cater to in order to have love. I don’t know why I see it as that. I am checking in with myself. This article is very triggering. I come from an abusive background and I’m not sure how to take this. It’s very important though for me to learn about the opposite sex for love and communication. But it seems this article will point to a woman having to be perfect in her ways towards men in order to have a loving and fulfilling relationship or to even have one in her lifeA “Great Man” . So there are different types of men then correct.. It’s like your telling us it’s all our faults if it don’t work out. Sorry. Like I said if I think this way cause of my past I pray The Lord heal me . and my logic.

  • Aldo Aldo says:

    Celeste65, I must differ with you according to the Word of God, which says in Matthew 19:9,(Jesus speaking) “And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.”

    The reason I disagree with your option to “get out” is because it does not leave room for God to work in that situation. Of course, each situation is different, and if the abused party has been praying and crying out to God, and believes she has heard from God, then who am I to say different.

  • Celeste65 says:

    Bottom line?

    You can’t know someone until you have lived with them….for YEARS.
    We all change, and I know I promised for better or for worse, but in instances of abuse the only option is to get out.

  • frans says:

    I honestly think that in 2 people before love is found one should look at the commonality grounds because through that true love blossoms. Titanic relationships are the ones when we get involved for the wrong reasons like whats in the looks and in the brooks and not for what we know and appreciate about one another.

  • Trish Hicks Trish Hicks says:

    Liz you also can have the same view on relationships.If you admire them and appreciate them correct me if I am wrong you would be interested in knowing how to come to the knowledge of knowing how one comes to those agreements in living out the relational skills of “we as christians do”what it saids in the word of God.That is one of the reasons other than the main purpose of dieing for our sins on the cross.But to also teach us mankind how to build relationships with others, and our spouses.Jesus came to show us that we were created to serve God the Father.So Jesus showed mankind by living as a servant.He was not famous for his looks,nor his teachings,he lived as a servant to those who would accept him and believe in and on him.Galatians 5:For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.As to why also in Ephesians 5:22 as mentioned above22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.It Just saids about husbands to love them and basically to to treat them with respect in some versions however this is the base of it all Ephesians5:20; 20 giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21 submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
    However Liz to gain this perspective you must be “Born again” because in your own ability you will never gain this perspective nor have the want to do this all day everyday for the rest of your life.However becomming Born again is a whole diffrent subject initself.There is multitudes upon multitudes of areas here on Power to Change to help you accomplish that also.Or you can come back here and many of us will be absolutely more than happy to help you.
    I do hope Liz I have been able to shed some light on this subject, For anyone of that matter.
    May the peace of God over rule your Lives
    Trish

  • Ron says:

    COMMITMENT.

  • Rashid says:

    LAURA
    THAN YOU I GOT LITTLE CLEAR BLESSING TO YOU

  • Rashid says:

    Aldo
    Thank you that what I was asking exactly my confusion is because Eve took the forbidden fruit from Satan and she convened the Adam to eat but he knew he breaking the promise with God ( instruction from God do not eat this fruit) I am sure that was God plan they can eat that fruit making it short do you think rat was God plan that Satan give fruit through Eve Satan could give directly to Adam ? I thought Satan knew that Eve has the power and she is the only one can convince to break the promise from God.i thought woman is important as in situation of Adam And Eve. Please clear me if woman has the power like Eve has same do think we will have less divorce. Thank you Blessing to you

  • Laura says:

    Rashid,
    About a woman leading the family… I think it depends in the situation. God calls men to be the head of the family. Spiritually, he is responsible to lead his family to God. The bible says that wives must submit themselves to their husbands and husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church and GAVE himself for her. That means, that the love of a husband must be sacrificial; it is his responsibility to lead, to provide, he must do it lovingly. Unfortunately, more often than not many men don’t take any responsibility to lead their families, many men just boss around, they expect to receive respect but don’t make any effort to actually inspire their wives to respect them. A lot of women are the ones taking initiatives to go to church, to pray, to get involved with God… I see women mostly alone with their children in church, their husbands prefer to stay home watching the ball game, etc. In these cases, women have to take the lead. It’s the women who take the responsibility to do what needs to be done for the family to thrive, and their husbands just tag along. That’s awful!

  • Aldo Aldo says:

    Rashid, I did not completely understand your question to Laura, and she may yet give you an answer, but what I did get from the question is that you were asking what she thought about a woman leading a family day to day.

    The Bible specifically states in Ephesians 5:22-24: “22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.”

    What I get from that is that a woman should not be the one leading the family.

  • Rashid says:

    Laura
    My spelling of name has been some change lol

  • Rashid says:

    Hi Laura
    You are right what you said I think men are easy to please at least I am I think lust and love are same d sometime I mean the world that teach us.
    I am going to ask you seems to me very sensitive person who want every thing in way of that creates pleasant which is good that is the reason that is come to mind and I believe what man and woman play role to create happy home my question is this how much do you think a woman should lead a family day to day event, task or other family matter who believe on God teaching blessing

  • Laura says:

    Radhid,
    I know that sometimes no matter what you do, the other person does not respond (Christian or non-Christian) but I think the main issue is maturity. There are people who refuse to take counsel from the word of God, or any other means. A lot of people say things like, “this is just the way I am”, etc. And many believe that you can’t really change, that you are the way you are, and there is nothing you can do about it. Maybe you cannot change your personality and the essence of who you are will stay with you always, but you sure can change your character, your values, your priorities, the way you act toward your loved ones and others. For Christians… when we understand the divine purpose of things, we are moved to change. It says on Romans 12:2, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be TRANSFORMED by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is —his good, pleasing and perfect will.” We are all a work in progress as Christians. A lot of people may not see it the same way, but in my view, it’s better that a person is already aware of this prior to marriage. I have seen a lot of couples where they think it’s all about “being in love” but that’s just a very tiny ingredient when you consider things in the big picture. I have also seen couples when the “love was gone” rekindle the romance and the love by starting to transform themselves into the man and woman God wants them to become as husband and wife.

  • Radhid says:

    Hi Laura you are right that is ideal but where we can find these kind ideal men and woman. I was doing all of that I still got divorce ;) I think both partner should think on same level finding a partner and building up trust that this person is not coming for short term relationship blessing I learn something

  • Laura says:

    I firmly believe that if a husband and wife live to please God; they will be automatically inclined to want to serve each other the ways that are meaningful to the other. Men and women DO have different needs. For example, if my husband realizes that I am tired and I am still washing the dishes, he stands up and tells me, “don’t worry, I’ll take it from here” and gives me a kiss… I think that’s awesome! But to another woman, that may not mean anything. She may just want him to leave her alone, because some people do find comfort and relaxation in those chores. I think that both, man and wife should be able to tell each other what is helpful and meaningful to them. Not just leave it to the other person to guess. I can be something like this: “Honey, what can I do for you? Is there anything you would want me to do?” and if you already know what he/she wants, then just do it without being asked. Look for opportunities to serve your spouse.

  • Rashid says:

    Kathryn
    I think it is good idea to read I will love to know your view of marriage, children who should have v on role on house how much percentage power each have it we read about Adam and Eve and we know Eve has more power than Adam even Angel approach Eve to tell her husband to eat the forbidden fruit. If man and woman both understand that once they marry they have to follow the law God.what do you think I am talking with my experience with children .

  • Kathryn Kathryn says:

    Am just reading a very good book that’s just out about marriage. It’s by Francis and Lisa Chan and the title is You and me together in the light of eternity. I am finding it very helpful because instead of being concerned with what a man wants out of a relationship or even what a woman wants, it is mostly about how your marriage can be a means of glorifying God and as He is the one who created us, man and woman and designed us to be joined as one flesh, I am pretty sure He knew exactly what was best for us so maybe we should be checking out these things instead of being concerned for our own ends. What do you all think?

  • Joanne says:

    Laura you are a drama queen!!!! Don’t over think the little things and relax.

  • Chris Chris Landwerlen says:

    Elizabeth…the bible shows us that God made marriage to show the closeness he wanted to have with his people, the church, his body. i pray that symbolism would help you draw near to christ who desires to love you as your spiritual husband, in closeness and perfect care. blessings!

  • Rashid says:

    Laura
    Thank you for pray for me.i believe on pray. Holy spirit I pray for Laura your mighty fill her dream that she is holding in her heart in the name of Jesus Amen

  • Rashid says:

    Hi
    Laura thank you for correcting me.

  • Neal maryland says:

    Hi Laura,

    Relationships are very tough and unless you have the right individual it can be right from hell’s kitchen. When I was dating some 30 years ago ( I was young) I was searching not for a sexual partner but for a friend to share my experiences with and to enjoy one another.

    I dated three tomes and gave up as I had other obligations and I did not find the type of girl that I wanted.

    Later on I turned it over to God and asked Him to take the human aspect out of the formula and help me to find a friend.

    He connected with a young lady with whom I came into contact daily at a small country store. She was 17, I was 18. We dated for 2 years and got married.

    We grew from friends, to husband and wife and just celebrated our thirty-fifth anniversary.

    I believe that when God chooses your mate the relationship is stronger because we work harder and live by His word.

  • Laura says:

    Hi Rashid,
    I am only indicating the correct spelling of the names God and Jesus. Names, especially God’s should be spelled correctly.
    And of course I will pray for your situation.

  • Elizabeth says:

    I am not religious, but I always appreciate the Christian perspective on relationships. Christians have some of the strongest relationships of any group I know. It’s much more about loving and meeting the needs of your partner than meeting your own needs… Anyway, I appreciated the article.

  • Rashid says:

    Hi
    Laura
    Please what is the question in your commit.God is more than mighty (beyond imagination)I hope you are agree and some the word we can not use even to a person in this word God have destroyed nation and races who have no respect for even his own creation. I do pray to Holy God to guide you and show you the way of truth in Jesus name Amen please do it now you can start getting blessing and then pray for me too thar God bring me closer to my love thank you

  • Laura says:

    jesus – BAD
    Jesus – GOOD
    god – BAD
    God – GOOD

  • Chris Chris Landwerlen says:

    liz mcm…i pray that jesus grace always be upon you so that you can conquer all circumstances through him alone! amen

  • Chris Chris Landwerlen says:

    liz mcm…i pray that jesus grace and mercy be yours today so you can conquer in every way. amen!!

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