By now, you know that a man’s early childhood shapes him in profound ways.
Not only does it set him up to find a specific type of woman attractive…
But it also shapes the issues he’ll struggle with for the rest of his life.
When you are struggling in your relationship with a man, though, you don’t tend to think about this.
You assume that he’s capable of loving you well and that he’s choosing not to.
But is that true?
Boys, Boys, Everywhere
We tend to assume that the men we love are as emotionally mature and capable as we are.
We assume that we’re in a relationship with an adult who knows how to communicate and work things out. After all, those skills are so basic! Everyone knows them, right? 😉
But emotional maturity isn’t handed to every adult at the age of 18.
Emotional maturity is gained over the years through completing developmental milestones.
If a man didn’t manage to do that because of childhood challenges, then he may end up stuck at a certain stage emotionally.
Signs of Emotional Immaturity
We can all think of a man whose physical body is all grown up while his behavior is stuck in high school.
Some men can function perfectly well as adults at work, only to come home and regress emotionally.
Unfortunately, in the early days of a relationship, most men know how to present themselves as highly functioning adults.
It’s only when you’ve been together for a while that the gaps begin to show.
For example, you might notice:
- He has a black-and-white view of the world.
- He dislikes uncertainty, complexity, and change.
- He prefers what is familiar and simple.
- He divides the world into the powerful and the weak (those in charge and those who follow orders).
- His needs and preferences come first.
- He expects you to make him feel better.
- He’s bad at listening, especially when it comes to criticism or disagreement.
- He says what’s on his mind without thinking of how it affects others.
- He’s a stickler for rules unless those rules put limits on his own behavior.
- He’s judgmental and often sees other people as incompetent.
- He doesn’t learn from his mistakes, because he needs to see himself as perfect.
- He doesn’t respect boundaries.
- He thinks personal growth is silly.
If you are nodding your head, then chances are you’ve got a man who’s emotionally stuck…
And he isn’t going to change much from who he is now.
He doesn’t see any need to change…
Not even if it costs him you.
Take Back Your Power
That’s a bitter pill to swallow if you dreamed of a healthy, mutual, adoring relationship.
If it helps, remember that he’s not choosing to be this way.
He didn’t choose his childhood. He didn’t choose to get stuck.
If you speak to his previous girlfriends, you might very well find that he’s been this way with all of them.
The person with choices is YOU.
You can accept his limitations and find a way to work with what you’ve got…
Or you can dream of a different kind of relationship full of warmth, sincerity, and emotional generosity.
What Do You Want, Really?
A lack of emotional maturity isn’t easy to deal with. It can wear you down over the years.
“My way or the highway” isn’t a good deal for anyone.
Can these men grow up?
It’s possible. But they have to want to.
And right now, they don’t want to. Being this way gets them what they want.
To me, there’s nothing more beautiful than a man who’s willing to learn and grow in his relationship. My heart leaps every time a man admits his mistakes. It means he wants to do better.
As women, we don’t always appreciate or even notice those signs of maturity.
It’s time WE did better.
It’s time we looked for the good guys who are capable of loving us back.
As you’ve heard me say before…
Sometimes we think what we want is a man, when in reality what we want is love.
Not someone to love, but a life filled with love, given and received in abundance.
Not all men can do that.
Don’t settle for a man who takes your love and uses it to make his life better.
Hold out for a man wants to work on himself and the relationship.
In ten years’ time, you’ll thank me. 🙂
Let us know what you think!