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7 Surprising Facts About Men
There are a lot of facts about men that women know. But there are many more that remain a mystery to womankind. Fu Jinming sheds light on some of the things men wish women knew about them.
Reading a guy is like reading an open book. We’re straightforward, clear and emotionally stable.
Well, most of us are anyway – most of the time.
Yet there are some things that women will find surprising about men. Like the fact that, despite traditional gender conventions – and the self-assured façade we erect in front of our egos – we can be insecure at times, lonely at others.
Then there are the times we crave compliments, even though we act like they don’t matter. Or how we’re just as self-conscious and dissatisfied with our bodies as women are with theirs.
Because the truth is, we’re only human. Nature may have intended for us to be the macho hunter born to protect his brood. But we’re still the same wide-eyed, fragile children deep inside. And it’s only in the nurturing company of our chosen partners that we let our emotional guards down, which may surprise the very same people who are there to catch us, often when they least expect it.
Then there’s the stuff that may not be as surprising. Like how when we say we’re thinking of nothing, we really are.
So to set the record straight here are 7 things about men that women may not know about.
1. We want attention
Women aren’t the only ones who need to be shown an interest in. Men too need to be showered with attention every now and then. The best thing is, it’s easier with us.
For male attention has less to do with looking into his eyes and asking him if he’d like a hug, and more with simply being close to him. You don’t even need to say anything. You can help him with whatever task he’s performing. Or to organise his things for him. Or to simply be patient if he’s going through a stressful time.
It doesn’t hurt to throw in a few compliments every now and then too. Tell him he looks dashing. Tell him he’s smart. Tell him you’re glad you’re together with him. He may not believe it all, but it’ll put a smile on his face. He’ll appreciate the effort, and love you even more for it.
2. We can be lonely
Contrary to the lone wolf image, men are social creatures. Even the most reserved of introverts will take to commenting on their friends’ Facebook posts – just to reaffirm their existence.
Loneliness is sometimes defined as the feeling we get when we want to connect with someone who isn’t there to be connected with. And as if that’s not sensitive-new-age-guy enough, we can be in a relationship and still feel lonely, particularly if we feel a sense of disconnect with our other half.
The antidote? Spend more time together. Go to his silly ball games. Meet him for dinner after work. Or just simply sit next to him when he’s reading or working. And hold his hand.
3. We like to “talk” about our feelings
Really, we do. Just not in the same way as the ladies. Social conventions dictate that men stay faithful to the alpha archetype – strong, silent, and not given to emotional self-indulgences. Yakking on about our inner thoughts is not exactly our idea of an evening well spent.
But we’ve been talking about our feelings all this time. Except we don’t do it in words. You see, men don’t TALK. We DO. That is, we’re subconsciously hardwired to SHOW you how we feel.
That’s why when we want to say “Sorry,” we say it with a bouquet of flowers. When we want to share the beautiful sunset with you, we snap a photo and text it to you. When we stop on our way to the kitchen to give you a peck on the cheek, we’re telling you that you mean the world to us. All of which, incidentally, takes less time than talking. Just saying.Image cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo by JD Hancock
4. We feel insecure
Here’s the truth: we’re afraid of the same things women are. We’re insecure about our place, not just at work, but at home. We’re secretly vulnerable about our role as “the man of the house”, and are constantly worrying if we are performing our roles right.
We hate to admit it, but we’d like nothing more to be assured every now and then that we’re doing ok. That we’re the providers (we think) we are. And that we’re appreciated by the most important woman in our lives.
Yup, we’re all big, egotistical babies.
5. We like you to like our presents
It may seem like an obvious point to make. After all, whoever sets out to buy a present to disappoint? Yet, men are always seen as nonchalant gift shoppers at best, and downright thoughtless at worst.
The truth is, we’re all secretly anxious to hear what you think of the present we got you. Not because we’re needy – or that we want you to know we went through Hell and high water to get that limited-edition handbag – but because we care. We care about the joy our gift may give you. We care about having made a mark in your life, no matter how superficial.
But mostly, we just care about putting a smile on your face.
6. We like to see you eat
It sounds perverse, but men like to see the woman they love love the food they eat. It may seem counterintuitive to our perceived preference for dainty eaters and elegant figures. While the latter may sometimes be true, the former isn’t always.
Perhaps it’s the awkwardness we feel whenever we bring on the bangers and mash, and you order a salad. Particularly if you’re out on your first date together. We’ll be stuffing our face like a hungry gorilla while you’ll be nibbling like a (very pretty) hummingbird.
Or it may be our primeval instinct to provide – we’re hardwired to want our women to be well-fed. So go ahead, please your man: ask for dessert.
7. We can think of nothing
Comedian Russell Peters has said it. Marriage speaker Mark Gungor has said it. Now, science has proven it: in a report published a few years back, the University of Pennsylvania has found that men have the ability to think about absolutely nothing and still breathe.
This is due in part to the way men’s brains are wired. While women’s thoughts are often connected to each other, men’s ones are often compartmentalised, separate from one another like boxes. And our favourite box by far is the “nothing” box. It’s the one we go to whenever we’re stressed or need a time-out. And it’s the one that drives women nuts.
If anything, women should learn to see it as our way to unwind, to unclutter our thoughts. When we’re in that box of nothingness, we’re clear, relaxed and at peace.
The best way to deal with our vegetative state of mind? Do nothing at all.