Category Archives: Good Men

Ben Roethlisberger: Just Another Famous Athlete or Abuser?

Needing MORE Attention?

Patience is a virtue or so I have been told. This however has finally bubbled over for me and in the name of Normalcy I must forge ahead. Here at Normal Headquarters a decision has been made to finally discuss the out-of-sorts mole that continues to grow just beyond our reach. It is hideous from what we can tell…out of place…and needs to be addressed. We are not sure whether the mole is of any great consequence, but enough is enough!!

Ben Roethlisberger, of the famed Pittsburgh Steelers, has been accused of sexual misconduct for the second time in the last 12 months. The first woman accused Roethlisberger of raping her at a casino near Lake Tahoe. The most recent accusation states that Big Ben, as he is known to millions of fans, sexually assaulted a college-aged female in a local bar. To be fair it should be noted that Roethlisberger has not been charged or convicted of either accusation.

It is, however, fair at this point to question the motives of all involved parties. Why is a filthy rich athlete hanging out with college girls and at college bars? He just recently signed a contract in excess of $100 million dollars. Has Roethlisberger not heard of Michael Vick or Gilbert Arenas? Vick has already lost millions and Arenas is poised to do the same because of his love of comedy and guns. There is a significant issue here with Roethlisberger that stinks of disrespect for women, his family, and his employer.

Can't You ACT Like a Champion?

Can't You ACT like a Champion?

Which brings me to another curve in the road…the media and their handling of this story. I will be the first to call a timeout when I think erroneous claims are disseminated by the media…with that said, though, I have to wonder if Big Ben is receiving preferential treatment.

I know some of you have thought about it. I didn’t want to in the beginning, but I am finding I can’t shake my wonderment. Is Ben Roethlisberger given the benefit of the doubt because he is White?

Dear NFL...Don't Be STUPID!

I cannot imagine an African-American athlete dealing with a second sexual assault charge in less then a year being treated with such kid gloves. Maybe we have matured and it really isn’t about race. As a White male I hope that we have evolved and that we treat Roethlisberger the same as we would anyone else accused of similar acts. I would like to think that I live outside the city limits of Delusion-ville, but the lack of national conversation tells me that we haven’t changed for the better.

It will be might interesting to see how the NFL responds to the latest detour Ben has taken us all on. I am not one to support making an example out of someone for the sake future dividends, but I am leaning that way right now. Maybe that is because Roethlisberger has failed to grant an interview to the police or maybe I am just burned out from repeated stories of fame and the misuse of power.

Aside from an outsiders perspective…the NFL and the Steelers need to evaluate what is important to them…the almighty dollar and championships or their image and fan base. I would imagine the spinsters at the league offices are working overtime to figure out their next steps. Yes men represent the majority fan base, but there are millions of female fans that are truly rabid for their teams as well. Sending a message of deference to sexual misconduct won’t enhance gate numbers on Sundays.

Men, not just athletes, should be role models. For those of you not incensed by Roethlisberger’s lapse in judgment–raise your standards and support responsible behavior.

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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Filed under Dumb Men, Good Men, sex, Sports

How to Help Your Man When He is Depressed

Sometimes our greatest fears are realized. Sometimes that pit in our stomach actually means a great deal. Yes, we are men. Yes, we can be and are often strong, but many times we are one degree from emotional combustion.

Normal men struggle with confidence more often they will ever let on. We, men, wonder what you wonder about us. We burn out, feel left out, and sometimes when we are vulnerable we lash out. These are things we are not proud of nor do we want to be sponsors of for the next generation.

Men become depressed at rates that are still unknown and baffling to the health care community and the providers educated to treat them. Thankfully, there is a growing movement to better understand male depression, its origin, and proper methods for therapeutic inclusion and treatment. Too often men and their families are unaware of the signs and symptoms of depression. Men shrug off their blue feelings as just another struggle they have to endure alone. They struggle to access the health care community and at best only talk to their primary care physician who either dispels such “nonsense” or over prescribes outdated and temporary solutions. 

I will admit that I am quite tired of the temporary solution-based approach that America has taken with just about every social problem. Makes me wish I owned stock in Band-Aids. The issue of male depression reaches far and wide impacting millions of men and their families.

The solution(s) will not be fast acting, maximum strength, over-the-counter goodies. The solutions will have to start at home. They will have to be identified and approached by the very person who has seen this man at his best and worst.

The signs are there even if communication about them is a bit archaic. We are and have been in a funk, as a country, for a good long while. Many men and women have lost their jobs, homes, and self respect. That’s right self respect…meaning that too many folks have not responded to their adverse situation in the manner they thought they would. They, like the peanut in this ad, are wondering why they can’t get up off the curb and start anew.

And, it is during these times when men need their partners the most. This undoubtedly puts women in a very difficult position because the language used, verbally and non-verbally, greatly impacts the man early on. When tragic news hits or you see a series of little defeats mounting for your man you have to treat him in the first 72 hours. This is, of course, not an official number but it gets the point across that to be effective in helping your partner you need to move swiftly and deftly in the early hours.

Are You Ready to Respond?

Think of it like a legal defense. We have all seen “Law & Order” or the new smash hit which I love “The Good Wife.” We watch as the lawyers and officers strategically plan the response and subsequent actions…all of which have to be done early on if they are to get ahead of the charge etc.

So, in that vein let us look at some things to look out for when you think your husband/man is depressed:

  1. First and foremost know how YOU typically respond to him when he is down.
  2. Prepare yourself for statements that are nonsensical and reactionary because he too knows your typical response style.
  3. Think about how YOU would feel given his stressors and situation.
  4. Take YOURSELF out of the discussion–this is not the time to talk about your needs/wants.
  5. Use physical touch to caress and reassure him–difficult because you may feel inclined to “mother” him.
  6. Remember that, like you, he may not want solutions early on.
  7. Let him know that you love him, believe in him, and will stand by him.
  8. Do NOT say, “Life isn’t easy” or “You’ll find something” or “That’s just the way life is.” Statements like these minimize his current fears and distance you from the solution. The message you are sending is…”I will wait till you figure it out alone and in the meantime buck up, you’re a man.”
  9. Stay connected and engaged. Do not fall the way of so many women who yield to giving him “space.” Men may say they want that, but only for a short time and most often because it is safer. They do not trust their feelings with you.
  10. And last but certainly not least…continue to love and support him…encourage him when his spirits are increasing and support him if and when mental health intervention is needed.

It takes a team effort to assist anyone who is down on their luck. Knocking them down even further because they are vulnerable sounds horrific, but practiced more than your neighbors would admit.

You can be your own best friend if you approach your man in thoughtful ways. These are tough times for everyone not named Palin, Jordan, Lebron, Gosselin, or Steve Jobs…let us all use a little compassion as we support the ones we love.

All the Best!

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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Filed under Fathers, finances, Good Men, head of household, Males, Marriage, men, Relationships, sex, women, Work

Man-Up or Stand Up? The American Boy is in Trouble

Who Needs Lifting? Men or Boys?

I am a staunch supporter of males and the females in their lives. I believe that we can do better, as a gender, but must step up and be accounted for. Some of you who read this might wonder if I woke up on the wrong side of the bed or took my politically correct vitamins in excess. Some passerby’s might wonder if I live in the basement of my mother’s home and spew comments in a an environment where anonymity is a given and gravatars act as i.d. badges.

Though this image might bring you joy it just isn’t true. I am a Normal, insecure, bold when I need to be, confident in waves, man who loves ESPN, the arts and yard work on any-ole-day U.S.A. And, yes sometimes I find it necessary to shed light on a social practice that isn’t helping males in their pursuit to be Normal…in an effort to reach personal greatness…and life satisfaction.

As a part of an online community, The Art of Manliness, I am often challenged to think, laugh, and cry at the experience of being male. The members are thoughtful and thought provoking which I applaud with all sincerity. Yesterday was a perfect example wrapped into a single thread. A member asked a question…he wanted to know how to Man-Up a 13 year old that he knew. He described this young boy as soft, squishy, an unmotivated sissy, and lazy. I, of course, commented and to his credit the author said he didn’t know of any other word to use other than Man-Up.

The Art of Manliness

I was also given a review on the term and its usage on the site which said:

“Within the context of this site (AoM), “manning up” simply refers to “growing up” and coming to grips with yourself as a man. It’s not so much about toughening up as it is about maturing beyond boyhood.” -Jamie

To Man Up? The Urban Dictionary actually has 25 definitions and there is an organization, by the same name, that strives to end violence against women. Many of us have seen the phrase in reference to sexual enhancement and performance. We have seen it used at Little League games to dissuade emotions associated with females from being aired. Many of us have heard the phrase as a call to action; a rising up from self-induced-pity to a place of formidable stature and strength.

The American Way?

And, we have to wonder what is the impact on a generation of young boys without fathers, without male role models in schools, without heroes on the athletic field, governed by a society and educational system determined to squeeze the boy out of them, reprimanded when they become addicted to video games as a result, and told that success only comes to those who can effectively repress feelings and push on in the name of the American spirit.

I say with great confidence and sadness that our young boys are at a crossroads. Our boys are flailing in the wind with no direction, purpose, or sense of self.

Late yesterday afternoon as I was in the backyard I heard three young men talking and making a bit of noise. When I looked over to my neighbors house I noticed these three young men (approximately 18-21) crawling through an upstairs window. The house, you see, is in the midst of renovations and the owners are looking to rent the top unit out. I stopped them, at least the one young man who looked nervous, and asked them if they were with the work crew and found out they wanted a “peek inside.” Let’s just say they got my drift and headed out of my urban neighborhood.

You might say to yourself that this was a harmless act, but I am concerned at the lack of judgment. It concerns me that these young men were so apathetic to getting caught. I very easily could have called the cops and I would imagine a charge of breaking and entering could have been established. To them…nothing. They drove away quietly without verbal exchange.

Before we can ask young boys to Man-Up, we first need to establish what they are actually Manning-Up too. We need to provide a playground and environment that let’s them explore with guidance, tussle safely in the name of bonding, and believe what they feel inside. Just because we have generations of men, mine included, that were cast aside from the rational side of life doesn’t mean that we have to send them down the river as well.

If we, adult men, want a seat at the proverbial table of life then we have to set the example…together. We have to communicate our disgust for the medical system that limits access and respect during pregnancy. We have to communicate our needs with our medical and psychological doctors. We need to role model the great dualities of manhood…that we can grunt to our friends one minute, compose poetic stories the next, protect our children, cry with our children, love our spouse and most importantly ourselves all at a moments notice.

Apathy for ourselves is one thing…apathy for the next generation—shameful. Think about the language you use and the story it supports or erodes…young boys are waiting for us to Step Up…in the process we might just figure out what it actually means to Man-Up.

All the Best!

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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Filed under Boys, Dumb Men, Family, Fathers, Girls, Good Men, head of household, Males, men, Mothers, sex, Sports, women

Are YOU Normal?

Just Wait for the Next Generation!

It becomes increasingly obvious that a segment of the population fears the word NORMAL. Maybe some folks think that it implies less than, adequate, or maybe even average when in fact it has NOTHING to do with performance!

Our country has sent us all down the river. Yes, this is a great country in so many ways but the messages we have sent down the stream to males and females can be devastating. Even I get sent down the river, as they say, by readers who send me angry notes of bewilderment. I sporadically receive some of these back-channel emails from individuals who are new to my blog and they ask what my definition of Normal really is. I am thankful for the reminder for both our sakes.

Re-establishing a marketing campaign for an entire generation can be daunting…but I am up for the challenge! I am showered, dressed, hair quaffed, new stylish glasses resting on the bridge of my nose…and oh yeah did some curls to exercise the ole biceps…mighty beneficial for a blogger these days. And, now that I am prepared for this challenge I want to reintroduce thoughts that I was recently asked to provide given the tenuous position our gender is in these days…

As I sit and ponder my place in the world I am reminded of the men who have gone before me, those around me, and those thrown at me. It has become increasingly hard to define what normal males look, sound and, maybe more importantly, act like.

On television and other media outlets, normal and male aren’t represented accurately or collectively, for that matter. We are inundated with reality TV shows about swapping wives and nannies who know better than parents. And on CBS we have men fighting in cages.

It is True...We are Humans During the Day...Superheros in our Dreams

I don’t see normal conversations about the experience of manhood or the shared activities and thoughts between a father and his children. I don’t see family shows depicting stable family life or marriages that one could be relatively proud of. What I see are dumb men who are presented as normal: men who don’t know how to respond to their spouses dreams, take care of the kids, or do anything requiring thought for others.

Can this be normal? I hope not, but I am gravely concerned that this is what our young children believe to be true. The bar for men has been set so low that the only direction to go, I hope, is up.

As our boys continue to struggle in academic settings and our adult men struggle to find their places at work and in the home, we need a change. We need to redefine what it means to be a part of this group called manhood not at the expense of women or children, not at the expense of common sense or traditional grunting during a playoff game, and not at the expense of our communities.

Redefining our gender requires adult men to think about it from a boyish stance. What do we want our boys thinking about when they think of themselves and this group they belong to? Do we want them to have a sense of pride for the good we contribute and the leadership taken through thoughtful discussion? Or do we want them to think of boys behaving badly at school, home, and work?

We Can't ALWAYS Be Perfect or Feel Invincible

In the 1980s we saw a redefinition take place for the youth of the African-American community. Prior to the Cosby Show, critics wondered how young African-Americans viewed themselves and what they could or could not accomplish when they grew up. Our media, to that point, had given limited opportunity for a child to see successful African-American children and their families. We are at a similar point in our history as men.

We have an opportunity to reshape the motivations of young men, and it will come at the cost of our own experiences. A certain level of grief can be expected when we begin exploring our lives and the motivations behind our good and bad decisions in the context of those who provided such lessons. It takes courage, community, and commitment from normal males to shepherd the next generation from I.S.S. (in school suspension) to college campuses where men are in danger of extinction to careers and families they can be proud of.

To be Normal ultimately means that one is fallible, successful, strong, weak, proud, humble—we are everything that encompasses a human being. Please do not support the notion that males only value comes through performance, but rather in the discretionary spaces of life where we can demonstrate both wisdom and compassion, emotion and direction, love and disappointment. We are many things…what we are not should NOT shape our direction now or ever as we steamroll into the future. The next generation of young men and boys need us and the next generation of young women and girls need us too. Let’s provide an accurate landscape that does not misrepresent the challenges and celebrations of life.

Best Wishes!

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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How Much is That Negligee in the Window?

Can I Help You?

We have all heard the tune from back yonder, “How Much is that Doggie in the Window” and been transposed to the days of our youth. Back when innocence prevailed or at least it did on T.V. and we lived a life of “purity.” That has come to a screeching halt…that of no surprise…to those of you reading today. We continue to be fascinated with those around us, the scandals they embroil themselves with, and the filthy gossip we bat around like a good ole fashion spat between Robin Givens and Mike Tyson. The dirtier, scarier, filthier it is…the better! Right?

Seeing others flail about is fun…right? Taking me away from my own reality feels like a gift from the Gods…right? Giving me pause, for entertainment purposes, is a way of giving back for the hard work and pain I have endured…right? Which brings me to a classic example of gawking that I just have to share…

The other night I was driving downtown Nashville with my fiance when we past the Hustler store (on of all streets, “Church Street”) when we noticed a gentlemen staring or should I say gawking through the plate-glass windows. As we sat at the red light, we both took notice at the level of commitment or should I say intensity with which this gentlemen peered into the candy store for adults. We both looked at each other and almost simultaneously said, “He looks Normal” as if to say he didn’t look like a stereotypical weirdo. Shocking no…surprising yes….

…and it got me thinking about this fascination with what is just beyond our reach. It also had me thinking about whether or not it was gender specific or driven by idiots. Was it something that only degenerates do or was this display of sultry desire a mere expression of hormones going askew? And, if gawking at negligees is Normal or accepted, what other ways do we ALL gawk at life and what assumptions do we lather onto the object of affection and/or disgust?

If men gawk does it turn women off? If women gawk do men feel mighty? Does it lessen one and uplift the other? Is it different if you are single and are “gawked” at? Does it sometimes feel good to stop others in their tracks with what you have done or what you look like? And, are there different forms of gawking that are unacceptable, equal, and/or just different? Would we consider tabloid journalism gawking? If so, then are we all guilty of the sinful pleasure of gawking through a news rack?

Let's Talk About Wants Instead...Whadda Ya Say?

Which brings us to the most appropriate and timely example….that of Mr. Tiger Woods. Millions probably watched Tiger’s apology today and formed immediate opinions. Many have been fascinated to gawk, I mean watch, the unraveling of an American icon. Now for many of you, this is an example of entertainment—not gawking. For some of you, like writers in the Golf world, boycotting is the approach of the day and for others it is mere water cooler talk.

Watcher or Gawker of Tiger's Press Conference?

Either way it presents as a perfect example for us to consider. Why is it that others successes and failures are far more entertaining and interesting than our own lives? Why do we get significant pleasure in the unattainable? Why do we want to bear witness (my apologizes to Lebron James) to salacious, scandalous, and murderous activities?

I must admit that I am the first to gawk at death on a Saturday night or two when I watch 48 Hours Mystery. I will say out loud that I am ready to, “…see dead people.” I say it with pleasure for entertainment and for my (I know I am not alone in this) desire to test out my detective skills.

Witness the NEXT Michael Jordan

I am not proud of my “gawking” and I want to continue to understand it. I think we would all do ourselves a favor by asking what it is that we gawk at and what are we truly going after. What lessons are we teaching our kids? How will they know when to intervene or will they just practice group-think and gawk with others when someone is in need?

Just recently a young girl was beaten in front of security personnel in Seattle and received no assistance or protection. Why did gawkers not turn into helpers?

Gawking can begin innocently. Gawking can merely be wishful thinking. The problem is that it sets the stage for an overall approach to life…One that places us on the sidelines of life assuming and placing judgment on people and circumstances outside of our purview and probably pay grade. Think about what you are gawking at and think even harder about the respect you are displaying to yourself and the younger generation looking for acceptable role models.

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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Who Likes Angry, Sad, Crying Men?

Do Women Really Want More Complex Men?

Sometimes…and I am going to be completely honest here…I feel like men, Normal and abnormal, can’t win for tryin. I will admit that last night I turned on American Idol to see who had made it into the top 24. Beyond the cackles and snickers that the show has been known to garner…this was a very big deal for the participants. They are going after a dream and laying it on the line for all to see…

…and of course emotions became the Special Guest appearing alongside the contestants, their supporters, and the judges. So…why is it that when I turned on the radio this morning this first thing I heard about was the “unmanly” display of emotions from the male contestants?

Shouldn’t a young man who wants something so bad feel safe enough to express emotions that have never been owned, outright, by females…but rather the human race? Shouldn’t a male of any age be able to share his emotions as they happen when they are appropriate for the situation?

I say YES! I applaud all of the contestants for handling themselves with more dignity and honesty than the pundits who find joy in raking them over the coals the morning after. We have seen this before. We have seen this with athletes who have won or lost a big game…with actors who have won the coveted Oscar. This should not be considered a revelation. There should not be even a trace of sarcasm.

So the question then needs to be asked of women…

“Do women really want men who are emotionally complex and Normal or men who display emotion with hand signals and grunts?”

It really is that simple. I will say it again…it really is that simple. Why do I say this? Well, because men are trained early on that the gender holding the carrot and the one chasing the carrot are set in stone. We chase the carrot of your affection even if we do so like a drunken monkey at times. We will swing through the trees of life in pursuit and, in most cases, abide by your “rules” of engagement. Those men who scoff and wait for women to come to them are lonely gents who are probably still living in their parent’s basement playing video games!

Take Heed Little Man For the Emotional Police are a Comin

We, men, play a significant role in determining appropriate emotional expressions. Those men who want to provide a better experience of life for ourselves and the next generation of males understand the gravity of the situation. It is those that think I am being trivial that disturb me. How many little boys heard the DJ belittle the Idol’s who were crying and thought, “Wait a minute…when I didn’t make the soccer team I was upset…did I do something wrong?” Further, how many caregivers heard the same message over the radio and said nothing but laugh. Never forget that we often say more with what we don’t say than with what we say. All children listen and take notes…we are just foolish enough to think they don’t.

It can be very easy to laugh at the stereotypical man and the ridiculous and detrimental manner with which he responds to life. It makes for “funny” sitcoms and reality shows. Who doesn’t like to say, “Yup, another dumb man!” What we should be doing, though, is thinking ahead…for the long-term implications. How will my son, my brother, my neighbor, my cousin feel about himself and how will he even know how to express himself?

Could Global Warming Actually Help Man-Kind?

The answers to these questions become quite important for future romantic relationships. There will be days, ladies, when your partner responds like a caveman and you will say, “If only I had married a man!” And, there will be times when he cries in your arms and you say, “If only I had married a man!”

We need assistance from you. Other men won’t agree with me out of some unfounded fear that they will appear weak. Other men…Normal Males…will agree, let down their ego and proceed with needed negotiations. We want to feel safe enough that if we want to display emotion—it will be received in a loving and safe environment. We promise to embrace this New World and we will put the time into understanding our fears and how to better express them. We just ask that you, too, think about this New World where men share feelings, both good and bad, and include you in their thought processes. It would help us immensely if you thought about how this new, relaxed version of ourselves would impact you—how you experience the world, where you will turn your frustrations now that we are open communicators, and if you truly understand the systematic changes that will occur.

So many of us wish for the greener pasture…for that green grass just outside of our reach yet fail to comprehend that if you actually land on the greener pasture, you actually have to mow it, tend to it, and water it on a regular basis just like the patch of grass you stand on today. Never underestimate the impact positive change in one area can have on another. If men actually take this seriously…women might find themselves in some uncomfortable situations very soon. It might feel odd at first to see your husband expressing emotion, discussing his feelings and asking about yours—you might even think that he was abducted by aliens…but give him a chance and give yourself a chance. You might find that winning the emotional jackpot is worth it to you, your marriage, and your kids.

All the Best!

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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Why Women Change Their Tune when Jewelry is Involved

Feeling Loved?

Being a man can be many things…some good, some bad, some quite exciting and others quite costly. Recently, my fiance and I went out to shop for our wedding bands. I was aware that her band would be exponentially more than my ring and so I prepared myself.

I thought of the cost of the engagement ring, my checking account balance, my credit limit…said a few prayers and had a couple of sips of my coffee before we met at the jewelry store. As we proceeded through the “security” doors our sales associate peered up with that, “I know them ;)” look and I knew I was in trouble.

You see the one thing I didn’t take into consideration was that when you buy an engagement ring of a certain quality you HAVE to buy a band that equals that quality…and yes I do know the famous 4 C’s of a diamond and if you don’t, guys, you need to quickly. The world revolves around 4 C’s and the irony is that we were all taught that coming home with 4 quality C’s on our report card was average—at best. I shudder to think what 4 A’s would cost you and me if they were a part of the equation.

Now before some of you wonder if my fiance is one of the famous or infamous Bridezillas…you couldn’t be further from the truth. What we both are is practical…at least we strive for that. And, with that in mind it becomes very easy to look at your ring(s) as investments…as both an investment in love and commitment and in the value it holds on the open market. So…what happens is this—you find that you cannot just place an average band with an above-average engagement ring. It would be like buying a nice car and treating it like a contractors truck…both equally valued when kept separate.

Are YOU the Joker in your OWN Life?

And…who is kidding who? Both of us want the rings to look complimentary to each other and I want the ole ego stroked when she fawns over my choice…and it doesn’t hurt when her friends do the same ;). Which brings us to the overarching challenge of jewelry for men and women—men get hosed and women get the riches. We know it. You know it and we can only hope that when we want something that is a tad flashy like a riding lawnmower or season tickets to our favorite team—you understand the value we see in the purchase. Otherwise, the couple runs the risk of playing tit-for-tat with everything from material possessions to sex. Nobody wins and assuredly each party loses. The relationship loses overall focus, commitment to what brought you together loses focus…with the end result being two depressed individuals who look at their relationship like a failing stock that was given to them years ago by a less than normal relative.

Playing Games with your Love Meter?

So the next time you think of purchasing something for yourself or your family think twice about the message it can send your bank and your family. Yes we all want to have hand like George Costanza so famously stated on Seinfeld, but having hand without the one you love…well you get the point.

Please understand that we, the male species, struggle to understand the cues you give us and struggle even more to communicate beyond the material goods we purchase. We want you to know we care and that you are that special someone.

We also ask that you return the favor and express support for those other purchases that you might not necessarily deem important for your family. Yes jewelery and the purchasing of special jewelry is fun and expensive, but the look on your face fuels us to want to be the best and provide the best opportunities for the entire family. So many of us learned that men, and primarily from our fathers, communicate love through giving and doing and while we adjust to the new and Normal approaches to relationships we still might dip into the well a time-or-two.

Would a Ring Help?

We both know that if we are to call a spade a spade we would say that spending any amount of money on a ring is ridiculous when we take into account what truly matters in life. To some degree the purchase is a frivolous one…and that is ok. Sometimes being  like or exceeding the Jones’s feels good and other times it doesn’t even come into the picture. Openly communicate what you can and cannot spend for your display of commitment and you will set yourself up for emotionally prosperous communication.

All the best!

Dr. Rod
Rod Berger, PsyD The Normal Male

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