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Michele HappeMichele Happe Blog
A place for discussion of addictions, codependency and eating disorders

The Language Couple-ship

Michele Happe, MA, LADC Updated: Feb 21st 2011

Even though men and women's DNA is almost identical, we are very different. These differences in part are what draw us together. We compliment each other. He is good at fixing things. She is good at understanding what makes relationships thrive. Men are basic and easy to please, women are complicated and baffling. When I work with couples, my standard comment is Men just want their women to be happy, and Women are never satisfied. Believe it or not, I have never gotten an argument from this statement. Please keep in mind I am speaking in generalities and there are always some exceptions to the rules. But the rules are the rules.

happy older coupleGiven our differences, it is important to realize that we need to accommodate each other. Men feel loved by hearing that they are respected. Women need to feel that they are cherished, and believe me this is not accomplished by a grope on the butt or the breasts. If a man is cranky and stressed, he can usually be made happy by the offer of sex. By the same token, women need to be careful about being too directive with men especially regarding their world of fixing stuff. In my marriage, our agreement is that the house is my domain, I am the queen and what I say goes. The garage and the outdoors is his domain…he is the king and what he says goes(except for house exterior color, because color is my domain.)

This is not a general recommendation. Each couple needs to work out their domains based on their passions and strengths and weaknesses. It takes communication and understanding and sometimes bravery to figure out how to navigate the separation of powers in relationship. Some relationships are mirror images of the traditional role. At times dad is the primary caregiver and mom is the breadwinner. This is fine and good. It just needs to be understood and agreed to.

Pat Allen, a Jungian therapist put it succinctly. She said, it is a man's world and a woman's universe. If we stop fighting this fact, we will be happier in couple-ship. If we have expectations of our relationship that are unreasonable both will be unhappy. A sense of humor and the ability to laugh at ourselves is indispensable.

Above all have fun, smile at each other, look each other in the eye and tell each other often that you love each other.

Be Well


Michele Happe, MA, LADCI am a licensed addictions therapist that specializes in addiction and codependency. I use Buddhist principles to aid in recovery and to help promote happiness. I also write and teach about these issues. I have a private practice in Minden, NV and Reno, NV and work nationally on the phone(775)230-1507 and through skype (mhappenow). My webpage is Join me on Facebook for lots of mini teachings.

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