This is part 12 of my Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus series. There is only one more chapter after this and then we’re done! 🙂
Chapter 12 is How to Ask for Support and Get it
By now, the reader may realize how Venetians work. Predictably, they are the ones that have a harder time asking for support. On Venus, loving someone means always offering support and intuitively knowing when they need it.
Men, of course, must be asked 😉 If they aren’t asked, they assume that they are giving enough. Women will patiently give for as long as they can, but resentment will build and they will end up having to demand. Men hate both things – resentment and demanding.
Dr. Gray gives a 3-step process for effectively asking for and getting support from your hubby.
Step 1: Asking Correctly for what You are ALREADY getting
The important part of this step is to begin by asking him to do the little things he already does and not take him for granted. Remember, men want to be appreciated.
Ask him to do the little things he does normally and then show him appreciation for doing them. In this way, he becomes used to you asking for things in a non-demanding tone. This step will recondition your man to respond positively to your requests. When he finds himself appreciated and not taken for granted, he will respond positively to your requests.
5 tips to motive him:
- Appropriate timing: don’t ask when he’s right about to do it or when he’s focused on something else. Nobody likes that 🙂
- Don’t demand
- Be brief – don’t give a list of reasons of why he should help you. Instead of motivating him, it will make him feel that you don’t trust him to support you.
- Be direct – spell it out for him 🙂 Subtleties don’t fly well with men. I was actually surprised to read that men will often hear a demand, disapproval or blame – most probably the opposite of what their wife may have intended!
- Correct words – say would you instead of could you. Apparently, it makes the world of a difference. Asking if he would do something is a request.
A good rule of thumb is to always start out with “Would you please….?” or “Would you mind….?”
Step 2: Practice Asking for More …
….Even when you know he may say no.
The second step of this process is to let him realize that he can say no and still receive your love. Men are much more willing to say yes if they have the freedom to say no.
Women intuitively sense what their partner’s response will be. So if they think he’s going to say no, they won’t bother asking. They will feel rejected and their hubby will have no clue what has gone on in her head! 🙂 (Crazy, but true).
This step is asking when you already sense he will say no. Prepare yourself for it 🙂 Have a simple “ok” ready. If you really want to make him happy – “no problem” 😉 Make sure to ask in situations where it is ok for him to say no and that you’ll truly be comfortable with a no. Remember our relationship scoreboard? Men care about how we feel about them.
To help you through the no’s: Know that each time you ask a man for support and he isn’t made wrong for saying no, he gives you between five and ten points.
When you ask a man for support and you do not reject him for saying no, he will remember that and be much more willing to give next time. If you don’t ask, however, and silently sacrifice yourself, he will have no idea of how much he is needed and how many times you have felt rejected without him actually rejecting.
Step 3: Practice Assertive Asking
In this step, you ask for what you want and don’t say “ok” if he says no. Instead, make it ok that he resists, but continue to wait for him to say yes.
A man may moan, groan and grumble initially. At this time, he is actually considering your request versus his needs.
This is a good thing 🙂 It is crucial to wait here. Do not break your silence. (And, as a woman, I testify that this is extremely difficult). Ignore the grumbles and they will eventually go away. He may grumble even as he is doing it, but he will be pleased with himself once he does something for you.
It is key to be appreciative once he does do it, even if he grumbled about it. Appreciating him afterward will condition him to be more receptive to your requests in the future. As time passes, and he is given appreciation and trust, he will respond more and more positively to your need.
What if he says no or asks questions?
Sometimes the questions may be rhetorical. It’s ok to remain silent then 🙂 However, if they are not rhetorical and he does want an answer, give him a brief answer and then ask again.
Assertive asking means asking with a sense of confidence and trust that he will support you if he can.
For example, he may say this to resist: “No, I don’t want to do that.” A good response: “I would really appreciate it. Will you please do it for me?” Silence.
Another example of resisting: “I’m busy, what are you doing?” The good response: “I’m busy too. Will you please do it?” Silence. 🙂
Of course, he may still say no. In this case, go back to step 2 and simply say ok. If you let go, he will remember how loving you were and he will be more supportive the next time.
Why Men are so Sensitive
You may ask yourself why men are so sensitive about being asked for support. It’s not because they’re lazy, but because they have the need to be accepted. Any request to give more may make him feel that he is not accepted just the way he is.
Asking your hubby for support and getting the support you need from him is good for both of you. For you…well, the reasons are obvious 🙂 And men are happiest when they feel they have succeeded in fulfilling the people they care about.