Mars Venus
What Men Need

What Men Need...No Ifs, Ands or Buts!


According to the book, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, men and women have very different primary needs. Men need appreciation, acceptance, and trust. Women need caring, understanding, and respect. While we all ultimately share the same needs, as you read this article, you will plainly see why some needs are more important than others.

The Male Needs to be Appreciated

The primary need for appreciation is generally confused with the need for respect. To appreciate a person is to acknowledge that what they do, or how they express themselves, is of value to you personally. Appreciation is an act of evaluating, while respect validates.

Appreciation acknowledges that the value of our actions, intentions, results and decisions has been received. It is the feedback that tells a man that his behavior has served a purpose. If he can feel appreciated, then he is much more willing to explore and understand why his actions have failed.

Without appreciation, a person begins to feel inadequate and incapable of giving support.

Appreciation allows us to experience our intentions, decisions and actions as valuable. It is the necessary support that inspires us to repeat an action that works or motivates us to change what doesn't work. Even when we fail to achieve our desired results, there is always something in what we did that can be appreciated.

Without enough appreciation, we lose our will to give. When a man fails to reach his goal, if he is unable to feel that there was some value in his actions, he may give up. Or, he may have the opposite reaction and stubbornly repeat the action until he is appreciated.

Men are especially vulnerable to this need to be appreciated. If a man is not appreciated, he loses his motivation and becomes passive, lazy, weak, dependent, insecure, and apt to procrastinate.

When a woman doesn't get appreciated, her reaction is quite different.

She tends to be even more motivated to earn appreciation. When her partner ignores her, her first impulse is to try harder to please him. Expecting men to do the same, she is confused when a man doesn't try harder to earn her appreciation. She mistakenly assumes that he doesn't love her. When she is not getting enough from a man, she may begin to unconsciously or consciously manipulate him into giving more through withdrawing her appreciation. She is then confused and resentful when he reacts by giving less.

The Male Needs to be Accepted

When a woman is critical of a man's behavior, she has no idea how damaging this is to his personal power. A man's response to not being appreciated is equivalent to what a woman experiences when a man judges or invalidates her feelings, needs, wishes, and rights. When a woman begins to pick his behavior apart -- criticizing the way that he does things, correcting his thinking, challenging his decisions, and being dissatisfied with what he provides for her -- a man loses his power. He retaliates with negative, demeaning judgments. He will disrespect and withdraw from her. He is drained of the magical power that her loving appreciation gives him.

Conversely, when a man is appreciated by a woman, nothing can get him down for long. Being appreciated is a male's primary need. It lets him know that he can make a difference; he measures his worth through his ability to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Appreciation becomes a fuel that motivates his every action.

Even when he is unable to resolve his problems at work, if he can come home to a grateful and happy wife, his stress from work can be more easily released.

The strongest drive in a man is the desire to please a woman. This willful desire gives him power. It first manifests as the sex drive, then later, as he is able to blend it with the desire to love, respect, understand, and care for a woman, it becomes even more powerful. When a man can be appreciated physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, then his power is at a maximum.

When a man is "accepted," he is received willingly. This attitude cultivates a man's belief in his abilities. When a man's actions are unconditionally accepted, he then feels free to explore ways that he can improve those actions.

For this reason, acceptance is the basis of behavioral changes in a relationship.

The need for acceptance is especially important for men. Sometimes a woman appears to accept a man based upon his potential; however, this is not true acceptance. She is waiting for the day when he will change and then she will be able to truly accept him. But men need to be accepted for who they are today, not who they will be tomorrow. A man will tend to become stubborn and resistant to change when he senses that he is not being accepted.

When a woman does not accept a man, she will feel compelled to change him. She will tend to offer suggestions that will assist him in changing, even when he has not asked. Some men are open to suggestions as long as they have requested them, but a man typically feels unaccepted when a woman is preoccupied with changing him or "improving" him. She imagines that she is respecting his needs by wanting to help, but this makes him feel disrespected, manipulated and unaccepted. When a man does not feel accepted, he will unconsciously or consciously resist change.

A man is motivated to change by hearing and understanding a woman's feelings and needs. When he senses that his attempts to support her will be welcomed and appreciated, then he is easily inspired to fulfill her wishes. Her acceptance ensures that, if he fails, he will not be disapproved of, but will be willingly received with some gratitude for his efforts.

Acceptance allows him to feel that who he is today is enough to please and satisfy his mate. With this kind of confidence, he is more willing and able to give his partner the respect and understanding that she deserves. Most women do not know this secret about men. They mistakenly believe that the way to motivate a man to change is to complain, nag, or disapprove. When a man feels his imperfections are unaccepted, it may take days before he can come back to his true, giving self.

One of the ways that a man unconsciously or consciously gets revenge for his partner's non-acceptance is to repeat the very behavior that she resists.

A woman does not understand this because, when a man does not accept her behavior, one of her first reactions is to change or improve her behavior. In this respect, women are more secure then men; they can listen to feedback about ways that they can improve their behavior without as much resistance, sensitivity, or defensiveness. Certainly a man can take feedback, but he needs to be feeling good about himself and be willing to hear it. Rarely is it effective to give unrequested criticism or advice to a man.

A man is sensitive to correction when he is feeling his need to be accepted; if he already feels accepted, he can easily take the feedback.

The Man Needs to be Trusted

Trust is a firm belief in the ability, honesty, integrity, and sincerity of another person. The need to be trusted is the need for an acknowledgement from your partner that you are a "good" person -- upstanding, you might say. When your trust is absent, people consistently jump to the wrong, negative conclusion regarding a person's intent; whereas trust gives every offense the benefit of the doubt.

Trust says, "There must be some good explanation as to why this happened."

Trust grows in a relationship when each partner recognizes that the other does not intend to hurt, but instead seeks to support.

Trust is the third primary need for a man. To approach a man for support, acting trusting is to approach him with the attitude that he can, and will, help. On the other hand, to ask for help without trust is to reject him before he has a chance. When he is not trusted, he will automatically begin to withdraw. Not only does lack of trust make it very difficult for him to respond, but it offends and often hurts him.

It is a woman's trust in a man that draws him to her.

When a woman is trusting of a man, she is able to draw out the best in him. Of course, if she trusts him to be perfect, he will let her down. But if she trusts that he can, and will, help, then he gets the message that he is of value and that his best is enough for her to accept and appreciate him. Her trust will draw increasing greatness out of him. Through a woman's loving trust, a man is supported in realizing his powers, abilities, skills and talents.

When her partner is not supporting her, trust allows a woman to assume that there must be some logical reason, and that when she lets him know her needs, he will respond to the best of his ability.

When a woman trusts a man, she feels safe to share her vulnerable feelings. If this man is indeed worthy of her trust, he will be greatly empowered by her trusting him to support her at such a delicate time.

A trusting woman also intuits how much a man can support her, and doesn't demand or expect more. She is able to appreciate and accept what she gets. She does not naively go around sharing her vulnerability with anyone. At the same time, she does not withhold her vulnerability from the people who are truly trustworthy.

The issue of trust can make communication very difficult. Say a woman doesn't trust a man with her delicate feelings. If she decides to test the waters by sharing a more diluted version of her feelings, a man will sense that he is not being trusted and he will begin to withdraw. She then concludes, "Since these diluted feelings turned him off, I'm sure glad I didn't share them all."

If she had been more honest, he would have been more receptive.

There is a time when a man is not put off by her lack of trust, especially at the beginning of a relationship, but a man will generally withdraw when a woman takes back a trust that she had previously bestowed. When a woman doesn't fully trust a man, it serves as a challenge for him to prove himself. If he has never tasted the nectar of her trust, he will patiently seek to prove his worthiness. If she has opened herself to him and trusted him fully and then, due to some disappointment, she begins to mistrust, he feels as though something has been taken away. In an indirect way, he is wounded emotionally.

Many times, a woman will withhold her feelings because she is afraid that her partner is not really interested. She rationalizes her uncommunicativeness by making some excuse for him, but inside she doubts that he would respond caringly to her feelings. She may end up denying her needs, thinking that she is avoiding rejection. In reality, she has built a wall between them.

When a woman doesn't trust a man's loving intent and does not give him a chance to be her knight in shining armor again, she prevents him from being attracted to her. It is the trusting glimmer in a woman's eye that enchants a man out of his self-absorption and inspires him to respond to her needs.

It is a woman's responsibility to find, again and again, that trusting part of her. But men have to share in this responsibility by earning a woman's trust. If a man hurts a woman without apologizing, he is unknowingly building walls. Most of the time, a man doesn't realize the importance of compassion or an apology. It is a woman's responsibility to let a man know what she needs to hear.

Although a man's primary needs are to be loved, appreciated, accepted and trusted, he also shares the needs of caring, understanding, and respect -- they are just secondary to him.

Do you have questions about this article? Do you need help understanding how this information can change your life? Talk to one of our expertly trained telephone coaches today and get the answers you are looking for. You can call from the privacy of any phone, and our operators are available to assist you with processing your call.

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