Women on Wednesday: I Can’t Make You Love Me

Welcome to the ”Women On Wednesday” post at Dear Mr. Man. This day is devoted to discussing topics that concern women from a man’s point of view. I will need a lot of help with this (topic ideas, comments, and other feedback). If I am way off base on a topic, you can electronically claw me or toss hot grits (or boiling water) at me through your computer. Together we can come to understand each other better.

Maybe.

I remember high school and being in love. With three girls at different times during the four years. I had more “girlfriends” than that, but three that I truly cared about. None of these compare to what I have with Adi (for the record), but at the time, they were real to me.

Each of these girls were special in their own way. One was a friend and a romantic interest. She would be the one that would break my heart without even trying. I was trying to find my way to manhood as she was trying to find her way to becoming a woman. The next one opened my eyes to a whole new world. It was amazing how someone of so few years could impact my life forever. The third tested my ability to be a man as I was trying to figure it out myself.

Obviously, none of these relationships lasted. God had other plans and I am living the dream now with my beautiful wife of twelve years.

With each of those young relationships, something was missing. Something that my immature years could not bring together. I couldn’t make them love me the way I “loved” them.

With the last that I mentioned, she forced me to play the role of a man before I was ready to become one. She had a difficult relationship with her mother which ended up with her living in a shelter for a short time and eventually led me to drop out of college (I went back years later and I am now currently working on a doctorate in Business Administration). I no longer blame her for that. We were both young and making decisions that children should not have to make.

With each of them, I never could make them love me the way that I loved them. At that stage, I loved hard and fell fast. There was a fourth love that was never fulfilled because I was in a relationship with someone else.

Was it really love? Even though those relationships fell far short of what I have with my wife, I’d have to say yes. However, love as an adolescent was as intense as it was insane. Living far beyond my years and no father to guide me through these times, I made many mistakes.

Women, when you have a man…I mean truly have him…understand this: he is yours. There is no interest in anyone else. There is no looking in another direction. There is only you.

As adults, it is no different. As men, we do stupid things sometimes. Things that we regret for the rest of our lives. But…

If he loves you. I mean truly loves you, then work to overlook our stupidity. Our frailties and failings. Our sins and stubborness. Know that in many ways, we are still the scared little boys of our adolescence trying to man up and be exactly what you need.

Sometimes we fall. That doesn’t mean we don’t love you. Sometimes we hurt you. That doesn’t mean we don’t love you. Sometimes we don’t love you in the way that you deserve. It doesn’t mean we don’t love you any less. We are trying to be the man you need us to be. I wish there were an instruction book to follow.

To my wonderful wife…this is not a confession of any wrongdoing on my part. It was simply on my mind and I had to get it out. I actively work at being the man you need me to be. I don’t get it right all the time, but I try hard to get it right all I can.

To you, Dear Readers, if I can speak for “him” for just a moment…

I can’t make you love me

No Matter how hard I try.

I can’t make you love me

Though I’ll love you til I die.

I give to you all that I have

I give to you all that I am.

Just know that I am doing

The very best I can.

I can’t make you love me,

Though I’ll love you like the man that I am.

Mr. Man

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