Friday, March 17, 2006

Believe

Moni made an interesting comment in regards to my last post. Here's an excerpt:

Frankly, I like a man to act like a man. When I first met my exhusband he was a "work boots and flannel shirt" kind of guy. The kind that wasn't afraid to get his hands dirty. Now, he's turned into a metrosexual, wearing the bracelets and rings and cologne. He dresses to the tee. Not that there's anything wrong with that. It's just the whole thing of being true to yourself.

Maybe it's my fault for wanting him to dress a little better, but I think I created a monster.

The man of yesterday wouldn't have changed his dress or lifestyle to adapt to anyone's image of a man. A man knows who he is. It's not your fault Moni that he changed. People by nature are always exerting their will on others to conform to their ideal mate/friend, all the while hoping to fail, albeit unconsciously. How many women really want to see a man on a first date crying at the end of Millon Dollar Baby? Uh, I'm just going to get some popcorn. We want what we can't have, and apparently what we don't want.

I'm just as guilty as anyone. There is such a thing as healthy compromise, but cleaning our slates for the sake of pleasing another is pure disaster, and is the reason family law is so lucrative.

Remember, be strong, hold on. Believe.

19 comments:

Bailey Stewart said...

No one, man or woman, should change themselves for someone else. If you want to change, you must want it for yourself. Period.

On another topic (since you brought it up on my blog) word is that if T.O. shows up here in Dallas - well, let me quote the esteemed Tim Cowlishaw of The Dallas Morning News "You can expect Owens to be a Cowboy this season and you can expect Parcells to be an ex-Cowboys coach in 2007". I am not excited - I firmly believe that Owens will tear the Cowboys apart just as he did with SF and Phil. We might make it to the playoffs and the Super Bowl, but at what cost to the team internally. You can be excited - I'm getting an ulcer.

And this is how it ties in a bit with your post - Owens will not change.

Scott said...

I certainly hope you are wrong about Parcells. It will be interesting to see if Owens was a Jones decision; that Parcells stayed away because he was against it but was forced to deal with it. Hmmm.

I am assuming that Owens will change, that he has learned a lesson from his humiliation in Philly. I could be wrong. As far as that ties into my post, there is such a thing as healthy change that I fully advocate. Just because someone changes in response to criticism from their spouse for instance doesn't mean the change wasn't needed. What bothers me is that a man who likes to ride his motorcycle quits because it freaks his wife out, or who suddenly wears pinks and purples and tip-toes around smelling flowers with his true nature on squelch.

trinamick said...

I agree with eve. I had a brother who was a fairly normal human being and male - hunting, fishing, riding motorcycles, racing cars, living in the country, etc. Then he married a domineering beast who was determined from the beginning to mold him into something "acceptable". Now he wears Dockers, no longer listens to his hard rock, quit his hunting & fishing, and moved to a huge city because she demanded it. He's miserable and is now a closet alcholic, but she got what she wanted: a whipped shell of a man.

Toni Anderson said...

You shouldn't be with someone and try to change them--not intrinsically. I've wanted my DH to give up smoking since we met--but I don't nag. He knows what I think (silent pressure LOL), and one day if he wants to quit he will. I have this disagreement with a friend of his and a fellow smoker. His argument is I should let DH do what he wants, without the silent disapproval--but my argument is my DH knew my views when we met.
I can't change his habits and, just as validly, he can't change my opinion.

Compromise is the only solution.

And wanting what we shouldn't... well I married a man who smokes when I HATE smoking. Setting myself up for trouble?

Bailey Stewart said...

That's what I was trying to say - if they have a bad habit, be it smoking (and I'm a smoker and I know its bad) or drinking, they won't change unless they want to, no matter how much you may want them to.

As far as T.O. - from what I'm reading in the paper, it seems to be a Jones decision. I think Philadelphia thought he would change too. I don't know why he would feel the need to - after all, teams are scrambling for him just as he is. That's why I always felt that sitting out a year might make him change - as in the above comment - he's only going to change his attitude when he's forced to.

And no, a man shouldn't quit riding a bike because it freaks his wife out anymore than a woman should start dressing more feminine or sexily because her husband wants her too. It's what Toni said - if you knew it going into the marriage ...

Scott said...

Trina - What an excellent example of what I am talking about. I feel bad just reading about it.

Toni - That's a bit of a gray area for me because my mother died from smoking cigarettes. It does kill, almost as sure as sticking a gun to your head.

Eve - Yes, it works both ways. A woman shouldn't feel the need to change, nor should the guy be leaning on her to do so. You fell in love with the person, right? Not the your own version of the person. It makes me sick sometimes.

As to TO, this is the biggest controversy since Quincy Carter don't you think? This is going to be an interesting year on this season of Dallas.

Toni Anderson said...

Did Eve just agree with me--she's been on the Bailey's again :)
Scott, my granny died of cancer and smoked heavily. My mom used to send me to the shop next door to get her cigarettes when I was a child. I think I started to refuse on principle at aged 7.

But I can't MAKE my hubby do anything. It hurts me, but I'm stuck. I did suggest I might start walking through traffic with a blindfold on and see how he felt about playing Russian roulette with life and death issues.

Toni Anderson said...

I was thinking about this subject and your love of the movie 'The Breakfast Club.' What do you think happened to them later in life or don't you like to think about it??

oneseeks said...

A very wise man once told me that a woman tries to change about a man the VERY thing that she loves the most. If the man ALLOWS that change, the woman loses her reason for loving him in the first place, respect goes down the tube, and the relationship goes into a tail-spin. In my life, I have found that to be true.

GREAT blog, Scott...I check it almost daily, and always leave feeling as if I have witnessed great talent at work.

Bailey Stewart said...

Nope Toni - Margaritas.

Beth said...

As Billy Joel sang, "Don't go changing to try and please me." I married a man's man and am so glad he's still that way today! =)

Shesawriter said...

I like a man to be a man too. Metrosexuals turn me off. I'm a alpha male lover all the way. :-)

As for changing men, well, I think all females try, but the true man won't let anyone steal who he is inside.

Tanya

Moni said...

Interesting topic Scott, and you're right people do exactly what they want. We do by nature try to impose our will on others. I think I misrepresented myself a little. I'm sorry for sharing that on your blog. I think it may have been TMI(too much information). I didn't mean it to be a "me" thing.

And thank you for being so encouraging. You're a sweet person. :)

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Hmm.

Interesting.

I think we naturally assume certain traits of our partners subconsciously.

I have become less tidy since going out with monkey.

This is not necessarily a bad thing, as it means i spend more time doing fun things instead of, say, folding clothes.

Scott said...

Toni - What a delicious question to ask. I don't have time right now to answer it, but I have given it some thought. I think I will post about it next, so stay tuned.

Oneseeks - I'm blushing! That's the kind of input that will keep me typing. Your friend is very wise indeed. Although I agree wholeheartedly, your friend's comment validates me, that someone else feels the same way. That is a great nugget of wisdom I intend to pass on to my children.

Beth - I'm not trying to stick a pin in your balloon, but I am suprised to hear you say that about your husband, after what I've read on your blog. I suppose it makes sense though, as our blogs serve as an outlet for rants, and who better to rant about than our spouses.

Tanya - You are right, and I think men need more instruction on staying the course.

Moni - If you polled every visitor that comes to my blog, not a single one would say you were ranting or inappropriate. In fact, bring me some more of that stuff.

Toast - We all change in reaction to our mates, no doubt. I have too. There are a set of core values that need to be exempt from change.

magnetbabe said...

Interesting discussion. My dad lately has been of the same opinion that men are losing their identity in today's society. This somewhat surprised me seeing as though he is a feminist as well. As a feminist myself, I am willing to admit that maybe the pendulum has swung so far that men have been overlooked. It's unfortunate that the empowerment of women has implied an oppression of men when what we should concern ourselves with in todays' society is the importantce of equality while celebrating diversity. This applies not just to race but gender as well.

On another note, as much as there are things I would change about Dean in a heartbeat, he is the man I fell in love with, just how he is. I whole-heartedly feel that when people in relationships try to change the other they are laying down the foundation of resentment.

Claire said...

My philosophy is this - Why try to change the fundamentals of the person wyou're with. Sure, try to get him to put the seat down...he'll try to get me to leave the remote in the same place every night. But when you're looking at someone's basic core and seeing things that "need changing" then that raises the question: Are you in love with that person, or are you in love with what you think you can "help" them become? Because if it's the former, then there's no need to change them. And if it's the latter, then you're doing a disservice to you both and should likely end the relationship right there.

Kathleen said...

I think I would like it if a man cried on a first date while watching a particularly sad movie - I don't mean huge sobs or anything ridiculous, but a surreptitious wiping of the eyes is kind of cool. Of course, it depends on how the date has gone up to that point. If he's been a complete schmuck/freak/loser, then the tears will be something to mock him about w/friends. If he's been completely cool and aboveboard, then it's something to talk about in a good way.

Kathleen said...

I find the motorcycle riding discussion interesting in that the guy in whom I'm interested rides bikes as much as possible. I'm a tad freaked by them, but he's been riding bikes a lot longer than I've known him. I couldn't ask him to give up something he loves - if it ever reached that point, which it won't so it's all moot.