Remember back to the moment when he did something, or perhaps didn’t do something, that you really wished he had done. You felt angry or hurt that he didn’t love you the way that you want to be loved. Maybe you vented with a friend and said, “I shouldn’t have to tell him …” The implication behind this myth is simple.

If my man loved me, he would know what to say, and when to say it. He would know what to do to make me feel good. If I have to tell him what to say, then something is wrong with him, and perhaps even with our relationship. This is a myth and here’s why: Being loved the way you want to be loved is, first and foremost, your responsibility. It’s more than a responsibility; it’s a privilege. We hold ourselves captive in a passive way of being as long as we cling to old traditions of what love should be; waiting around for the perfect man to come along and get it right.

The masculine power is, at its core, one of giving. When a man is in his strength and in his power, he finds joy in bringing you joy. This is a masculine archetype as old as time; men want to provide. And let me tell you — the way this translates in the twenty first century is men want to provide you joy. “But,” you might say, “shouldn’t he just know how to make me happy?” Sure, he can take some guesses. But it’s highly probable that he won’t get it right all the time. Because what you need, and what you want, is something that only you can be fully aware of from moment to moment. Knowing yourself, and what you want, is the privilege of being YOU. Sharing what you need directly with your man is the key to your own empowerment. Rather than shut down and think to yourself, “He isn’t saying the right thing,” try stepping deeper into vulnerability by sharing with him what he could say that would delight you.

You might say, “Honey, I’m noticing that what I really need from you in this moment, is to slow down, look me in the eye, and tell me why you love me. I want to remember and feel your affection right now. Would you do that with me?” Asking, “Will you?” is the second key to your empowerment. When you ask your loved one, “Will you?” you are giving them a chance to meet you halfway. By voicing what you need, and then asking for your partner’s participation in giving it to you, you are signaling to your partner that you recognize that they may have needs of their own that need to be voiced.

A relationship is called a relationship because it is the harmony between two people’s hearts, minds, and personal needs, coming together to create a shared experience. When each person shares openly and genuinely about what they most want, and invites the other to join them in that desire, something beautiful happens.

Next time you think, “he should,” consider reframing the thought to, “I’d like to invite him,” and see what happens. You may get exactly what you want. "

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