He Never Knew What CommitMEANT

by Stanley J. Leffew

Why do men struggle with commitment?

This question about the tendency in men to find it hard to commit seems to surface over and over again from women all around the world. If I could identify in a few simple strokes of the keyboard on a page of my site the answer to this question, I would be a hero to women everywhere.

Not to worry, I haven't put on my hero tights and cape just yet. I would, however, like to share a few thoughts with you on this.

Here are a few things I have heard stated about men and commitment over the years.

  • Men find the conquest and the chase more desirable than actually winning the girl
  • Men find their identity in their vocation more than they do in relationships
  • Men are on an ego trip and find their validation from the attention they receive from many women
  • Men are looking for a trophy wife

Some of these things may have elements of truth in them, after all, man is a complicated puzzle, but I would like to direct your attention to another possible missing piece of that puzzle.

It has been my observation over the years in my communications and dealings with men that men struggle with commitment because they primarily have developed the wrong focus. Women want men to naturally commit of his own free will when he has been instructed, influenced and programmed to do the opposite.

Consider some of the things popularized in our culture as reading materials for men and you'll see what I mean. In magazines targeting male readership women are portrayed as a sport, as a "Bunny" paraded around in bunny costumes and as "Pets" of the month.

Adding to the fuel and feeding of this mindset are male-focused establishments named after the body parts of a woman and so-called Gentlemen's Clubs. Don't even get me started on Hollywood, shock jocks, the porn industry, the sensual music videos objectifying women and the smut circulating all over the Internet.

Men have developed a tendency to...

  • make relationships more about turning on than tuning in
  • chase after the nighttime more than the lifetime
  • make relationships more about passion than promise
  • seek relations more than relationship
  • make the URGE more important a focus than the MERGE

This tendency in man to chase after the physical is the reason women are the ones who often lose when the relationship is founded on more of a sexual directive. The man gets what he is really more comfortable with and programmed to seek and the woman is left to long for deeper intimacy and commitment.

The problem usually arises when women take a man whose focus is more about the nighttime and expect him to naturally pursue the lifetime.

I think men need to be deprogrammed from this shallow mindset and reprogrammed to think differently. The greatest men I know are men of character and commitment. The greatest men I know have a pursuit for something more permanent. The greatest men I know are men of promise. The greatest men I know find value and fulfillment in seeking the lifetime more than they do the nighttime.

I just had to experience saying my goodbyes to my father. He was 75-years old and passed away in early October. As I looked at the casket containing his body and my mom who stood by his side for 55-years of marriage, I was again reminded of all this. Pictures of his children and his children's children decorated the satin cloth where he rested. I am so thankful that my parents modeled for me that a successful relationship is more about LEG-A-CY than about how much LEG-I-SEE.

One of the saddest things that will ever be said about a man is that he didn't ever really know what commitMEANT.

┬ęCopyright Stanley J. Leffew

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