I was walking through Trader Joe's the other day just making the rounds down the last aisle before checking out when I had to step out of the way for an employee walking through with his own cart. He had two dog beds from the upscale pet store next door and he was raving to his workmates, "Hey, these are for you when you get kicked out of the house at night! They'll be in the back room!" To which another guy answered, "Hey, man, where'd you get those? They look comfy." Then another guy harps in, "Dude, I want some of those for my bed." The original guy says, "Yeah! Only $9.99 on sale!" The other two guys nearly grunt to one another as the one says, "Man, I'm gettin' some of those." I turn to the two of them and say, "You can never quite get the bachelor out of a man, can you?" He smiles with pride and appreciation that I get it and says, "Yeah."
Boys will be boys.
And, if you haven't been around long enough to figure this out, let me tell you that
men will be boys as well.
I mean this in the best of ways, but it does need to be said. You see, so many of us girls grow up to become women and we think that we are going to marry some man who is just going to be so romantic and think of us all the time and he'll truly love all the things we love - especially staying up late, legs crossed on the couch, sharing our hearts together. I'm not saying that men don't do that kind of thing. My husband is an amazing listener and he shares his heart with me a lot, but there are just some basic differences between men and women and we set ourselves up if we pretend it isn't so.
When God made man, He said, "It isn't good for man to be alone." Boy howdy. Once I was in a ministry and we had monthly leadership meetings at a coffee-shop in town. I can't remember what started the conversation, but two of the guys there were talking and something led them to discuss the way they lived in college. The one guy said, "I had one bowl and one spoon and I used them for everything. I don't even think I washed them every day." You see, most men, left to themselves will live in basic, functional surroundings with the minimal, no-fuss elements. The makers of throw pillows and most other little knick-knacks would literally go out of business if men lived alone and there were no feminine influence. The throw pillows, I now see, would be replaced by dog beds ... Used by adult men on their own beds. Yep.
So, why am I writing about all this on my Marriage Matters Monday post? I just sat back after that Trader Joe episode and reminded myself. You married a man who has the insides of a boy and you just need to love him as he is. I have girlfriends who love to text me and talk long hours on the phone and pray together over our concerns. We women have upwards of 10,000 words a day and we get to use them with one another and delight in all this exchange of thoughts and feelings. My husband (like most men) has about 1,000 words a day. He also has a thinner corpus callosum (the middle little strip of connective tissue that goes between the two halves of the brain) than I do. Men just do.
That means they can box things off and think about one thing at a time, or, get this: think of absolutely nothing at all. Whereas, we women, we think in tandem, almost holding more than one thought at a time. Then, take the content of our thoughts. Men, who have the capacity to think of one thing, well, they do. And we, well, we usually don't. Did you know that they think of that one thing on average 30 times a minute. It flashes across their mind all the time. Perspective, girls.
So, when you want your husband to be just like your best girlfriend, just know you are setting yourself and him up for disappointment and failure. He may love you up to the moon. I hope he does. He may be romantic and committed. I pray he is. But, always remember, boys will be boys and men will be too. Let's cut them some slack and love them for exactly how God made them.
photo of trader joe's courtesy of grocery.com