Relating Amongst Marrieds

I have been spending a bit of time amongst married people lately and seem to notice some patterns... and this might be dangerous to stereotype so I could be way off, but here goes...

It seems like women, in general, have a natural tendency to please their husbands. And men, to some extent have that tendency as well. 1 Cor. 7:32-35 talks of this so I can't be too far off yet. However, what I tend to notice is that both sides tend to please the other in the way they want to be pleased or the way they think the other wants to - but are not necessarily correct. The other problem is that one side or the other tends to be out of balanced and makes the others affirmation or gratitude into an idol, which causes them to literally burn themselves out for the other and wonder why the other does not give back like they give. The problem seems to not be the giving... rather the motivation for the giving.

Think about it. I think all of us have been around someone before who was absolutely desperate to please us... and the only natural inclination we had was to try to run away or not be pleased. It was actually hard work to try respond in a Christ-like manner because everything in us wanted to run... because it was a borderline co-dependent relationship.

I'm convinced that it is not doing of the things that the "giver" does that is bad. Rather it is the motivation of the heart. The reason for loving one another has to first and foremost be unto the Lord as an offering. Period. Then regardless of the other's response, it really does not matter a whole lot. Yes, it is good to do loving things for the other, but when pleasing someone else in love is a very distant second to doing things onto the Lord, than life starts to change.

Honestly, I'm betting there is a decent chance that if the "giver" did this they would probably "give" far more because it would not be them burning themselves out but rather the Lord's power flowing through them due to the Holy Spirit. This would not leave them chasing the fading treasure of a compliment or "thank you" (and how many of these are enough? And are they really that big of a deal?) but rather overjoyed at the blessing of having the opportunity to be a blessing.

Next, I think part of the problem is that both sides tend to appreciate the other/please the other in a way that is not that big of a deal for the other side. For example, it seems common that many men practically become workaholics to provide for their wives and children out of love, when the wife and children want nothing more than there husband/dad present and alert to relate/spend time with. He views that his 60 hour work weeks are because she is a high priority in his life while she feels like work is a higher priority than she is.

The problem partially is communication I think. Think about it. Do you really want to have to tell someone how to love you? I don't think many women want to have to tell their man how to take them out on a night of romance. If she has to spell out every detail of how he is to act and every aspect of the date/their time together, it just becomes a programmed robot that she is with. On the same side, a man does not want to have to tell his wife every detail about how he desires to feel loved. She is just supposed to know those things. And so we have a problem because both sides are just supposed to know how to love the other side, but do not know how. And so both sides, it seems, tend to give love in the way they would like to receive it, but start to not feel a whole lot of love coming in.

O.k. I just made a ton of stereotypes. But I do think there is some truth here. Does this make sense?