Wednesday, May 26, 2010
The Male Ego
An old boyfriend of mine once said that 90% of what men do and say towards women is driven by the intricate, fragile and easily triggered male super ego.
Of course, we females were subconsciously aware that a single word to damage said ego can send a man into a hole so deep, we'd have better luck finding a heavily discounted Chanel Chance perfume (impossible- I tried).
In reading this, not every man necessarily has to fit the 'macho type' of characteristic, but when the ego is inflated, there are many common responses all men ( and many women ) tend to display.
It still shocked me how right he was, however. So I researched and fine tuned my discoveries.
Identifying the male ego
For some it makes us competitive, always striving to be first, to be better, to go farther, faster, longer. For others, it drives the inability to say no, always involved in the next thing in hopes of praise and complements. And it contributes to the martyr syndrome, the one who continually feels they have to sacrifice their time because, tsk!, no one else can do it!
So how does this relate to men and women's relationships?
- It motivates extreme advances
- It rears its ugly head in arguments
- It creates a feeling of superiority and power- BLEH!
- It doesn't call the next day to reassure you
- It puts the car in 'park' at the end of a date in the middle of a deserted parking lot in hopes of a happy ending. ( We certainly do not need examples for this one )
- It is the first not to care any more
- It triggers the need to chase, and receive satisfaction of attaining the 'next best thing'
- It creates the beloved familiar wall we like to call their 'defence mechanism'
'What have I done wrong now?'
'Is that what you think?'
'I apologise if that's what you think I do, but I don't'
'And when exactly? And what exactly did I say? And why is that a problem?'
'That's not going to be a problem, now is it?'
Worst of all, it overrides the simple apology with "what makes you think I'm the problem here?". The male ego clearly knows no bounds. For example, Winston Churchill, who would rather lose 40,000 men at war than to admit his genius plan was indeed a genius mess.
Deflating the male ego
In a time when his ego is so puffed up he can barely storm out of the room, the only things that can calm the situation are
- Time, where you or he have to end up walking away, hastily saying a goodbye over the telephone, or like myself, quickly evacuating down a shopping centre fire exit.
- A bigger ego, to only be used by professionals that can control it long enough to throw it back into its cage. In my case, a friend intervening as I myself have not yet learnt its ways
- Common sense kicks in and overrides the mighty ego. Note: rare.
Now of course, some women already have acute awareness of as to who is really in charge in a relationship. We are the enablers, the obligers and the humourers of the male super ego, those who allow them to believe they are in charge.
Responding to the male ego
We see it, identify it and learn to accommodate a man's need to feel
Smarter, i.e "I'm just letting you know"
+ response "oh really darling how interesting!"
- response ".... yes I knowww"
More Competent, i.e "why don't you let me handle this"
+ response "you're probably right big boy"
- response "I can handle it!"
Great in bed
+ response "you're the biggest and best I have ever had
- response "not bad"... to which of course you will receive "NOT BAD? Is that it?"
Capable of having you any time they want, i.e "wanna catch up tonight, say 11pm?"
+ response 'whenever you're free' or 'yes, yes, yes'
- response ( my favourite ) 'actually I'm not really interested'
We have the ability to turn man to monster, in need of a master. Sometimes we have to remind them that a great boxer has to be able to take a punch!
We know when to stroke it, when to nurture and accept it, and when to bruise it so hard it struggles to return more than Kathy Lee Griffin's career.
So to my dear old.. friend, you were right on the money after all. Thank you for your honest insight into male and female interactions, and what really goes on beneath the surface. I think actually being aware of a man's needs and how we affect you really improves my personal interactions with other men. And even though I didn't know you were right at the time, I let you believe so anyway ;)