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I realize that this has all been said many times.  However, it bears repeating and going into some detail as many women still think simply being female is enough to warrant having a husband.  It’s not.

No one is entitled to a spouse, man or woman, just like no one is entitled to an Audi A8 or a position as CEO of a Fortune 500 Company.  Finding a man to spend the rest of your life with takes work and it also takes dedication.  Dedication must come before meeting the man and it will last through the courtship and through the rest of your marriage until (hopefully) death.  This dedication must start at a young age.  A girl needs to decide in her mid to early teens what she wants out of her life.  Does she want marriage or does she want a career?  She needs to understand the repercussions of these decisions and be steadfast to reach her goal.  There is no *All* for women (or men) to have.  If you choose marriage and family, you will be sacrificing some things.  If you choose career, you will also be sacrificing some things.

I want to talk here to those women who decide they want a marriage and family.  If you decide you want this for yourself I have compiled a list of things that most men are looking for in a wife (notice I said a wife.  The list is very different for men looking for a quick fling).

Be Beautiful

Beauty is what a man is going to notice first.  It is how a woman looks that will first draw attention.  He needn’t say a word to a woman to know whether or not he finds her attractive.  Beauty is necessary for any woman attracting a man, whether it be a one night thing or a relationship.  Too many women confuse this idea that he should be attracted to personality before deciding relationship status but this is simply not how men are wired.  Intrinsically we know this (or women would not dress like this on Halloween or any other night of the year)

I know that not all women are endowed with natural beauty.  We do all have, however, a base with which to work from.  Learn how to apply makeup and enhance your best features, stay or get yourself thin, workout (not just cardio either.  You need some muscle so learn how to lift weights), find a hairstyle that enhances your face and keep it long, stand up straight (This is hard.  Women, as a whole, slouch and it’s not attractive.  Try standing up straight and you automatically set yourself on a different level than most women.  It takes some time to get used to and your back muscles will likely even get sore after a while, but keep it up.  It changes your entire look), find some feminine clothes that fit.  Those baggy sweaters are comfortable, sure (Your talking to the queen of baggy sweaters here.  While in college, I had friends be sincerely surprised at how thin I was because I always wore baggy sweaters.  You can dress in a feminine way without looking promiscuous) but they hide your best features.  Same with sweatpants.  Don’t do it.

Find someone that you trust to help you out with all of this if you need it.  Someone whom you trust to tell you the truth about how you look and what needs to change.  You would be surprised at how much some women in some department stores love to help women out, as well.  Some stores will even give you an appointment to help with your wardrobe and I know that they would give makeup and hair opinions as well.

Learn to Cook

Look, cooking is not hard.  It’s really not.  It simply takes practice like anything else you set out to learn.  If you learned to play the clarinet in highschool, you can learn to cook. You are going to make mistakes.  I daresay, a good cook has to make mistakes to become that good cook.  You aren’t going to learn the hotspots of your stove, pans, and oven without mistakes.  You’re not going to learn how to cook a rare or well done steak without making mistakes and you’re also never going to learn what you love in a recipe and what you hate without making mistakes.  If you burn one meal, figure out why (heat too high? didn’t flip soon enough? wrong pan? etcetera) and then next time make the fix.  A woman doesn’t become a good cook over night.  It is something she has learned by making many, many mistakes and learning why so she doesn’t make them again.  Don’t be scared to cook because you are afraid of doing it wrong.  You will do it wrong, but you won’t make the same mistake next time.

If you can cook, but you have this idea in your head that you shouldn’t have to for a man because he should cook for himself then don’t be surprised if a man passes you for someone else.  This idea that a wife caring for a man has somehow become a mother to him is beyond absurd.  A woman goes into a marriage expecting security and comfort from her husband.  There is no reason that a man shouldn’t expect the same from his wife.  Men love food.  It brings them comfort in a way that few other things can.  If you aren’t willing to provide this comfort, then you cannot be upset that he settles down with another woman who will.  (Also, ladies, make man-food for your husband.  Maybe not every night, but from time to time, trust me, he needs it.  I will be going into this further in an upcoming post).

Be Sweet

A man doesn’t want to marry his boss.  He already has one of those or is one most days of the year.  He wants a woman who is pleasant, who asks for things rather than demands them and who speaks in a respectful tone of voice.  Don’t nag.  It’s unbecoming and it’s annoying.  If you married a very masculine man you aren’t going to get anywhere with it anyway as he will ignore you, laugh in your face, or tell you, in no uncertain way, to knock it off.  You will get more with honey than with vinegar.

Know your value

Commenter Carlotta at Alpha Game explained this to her daughters in an excellent way:

I showed them some jewelery that I was saving for them to wear on special occasions when they are older. I then told them that they had to wait to wear it, but every single other person I could find would get to wear it, break it, steal a piece and throw it in the mud…but eventually they would get the diamond necklace.

Neither wanted it.

“Good, that is how a good man will feel about a women who has let every Tom, Dick and Harry feel up her goods around town.”

Message received.

Feminism may teach that women can be promiscuous like a man without consequences.  That doesn’t make it true.  Men want to marry the gem with the highest clarity.  If you wish to marry, decide at a young age and keep your necklace gleaming.  It won’t be easy and no one can guarantee you will marry because you waited.  This is what men want from a wife, however, and it is a gift worth giving.   You, your marriage, and your husband will benefit from it.

Be Loyal

You need to demonstrate loyalty.  Marriage is a loosing proposition for men both legally and in what women are currently bringing to the table.  You can’t singlehandedly change the legalities of marriage but you can demonstrate loyalty.  If all your girlfriends are going for a girls night out to a bar, tell them no.  Do not flirt with other men.  Make it clear that you understand the risk of marriage by being open to a prenup and/or a marriage that wouldn’t be considered legal (a religious ceremony only).  Don’t make the wedding a big deal and be fine with just a wedding band or a ring from a pawn shop.  This shows loyalty in that you are making it clear you are in this for a marriage and not a wedding.  The wedding day is a couple of hours of flowers and a pretty dress.  The only truly important thing about it are the vows.  The marriage is for life and you need to know this in your bones when you say the vows.  They are taken to last a lifetime.

Be Warm and Compassionate

You need to do this by keeping a warm and inviting home, but more than that you have to be warm and inviting yourself.  Figure out the difference of when something needs to be said about something your husband might have done and when to simply let it go.  If he comes home from a crummy day at work and snaps at you, let it go.  It’s work talking and not your husband.  There is no reason to draw attention to it.  Give him some time to relax and say nothing about it (don’t draw attention to it through your behavior, either.  Move on like nothing happened).  If something more serious is going on and it needs to be address, address it in a calm and direct manner.  You both can’t deal with it if you are changing the subject to something else, yelling, crying, etcetera.  Deal with that one thing and move on.  Also, and this is big, once it’s been dealt with, it’s over.  It is not fodder to bring up another time to throw in his face.  It’s in the past.  Leave it there.

Be Fun

Men love to be around women who like to have fun and who laugh a lot.  Don’t fake giggle to draw attention, but have a good time and laugh like you mean it.

Give Him Respect

You need to respect your man and you need to feel it down to your toes.  This is not the same as feeling comfortable in his warmth and security.  This respect can actually be a little uncomfortable.  With this respect comes the knowledge that you will do things for him that might make you very uncomfortable.  Things like not calling him out in public even if you feel embarrassed or angry, not saying bad things about him to your girlfriends when they are saying awful things about their men, doing something that he has requested you do even though your friends and family may disagree.  Respect is key in a strong marriage and it’s not always warm and fuzzy.

Be Appreciative

Just as you will be sacrificing things to be in a marriage, realize that so will he.  Very likely, he will be sacrificing more than you in many cases.  Notice what he does for you, what he has given up, and what he is giving.  Thank him for it!  Don’t do it just once, either.  It’s not something that should be done everyday as it would get annoying, but every once in a while take a moment and think about what he is doing for you and tell him that you have noticed.   Leave a note in his briefcase, make him his favorite meal, or buy a beautiful nightgown.  It’s important that you realize what he’s doing and that he knows you realize it.

Be Affectionate

When a man has decided he wants to be in a relationship, things change for him.  Most men are perfectly capable of having no string attached sex, but once they enter into a relationship sex and physical affection become necessary.  Touch is how a great deal of men understand love.  Never, ever withhold sex or your affection and use it to purchase what you want.  There are a few occasions that Athol would go into at his site where this might be wise, but those reasons are few and far between.  If you want the porch fixed, for goodness sake, don’t tell him you are not going to sleep with him until it’s done.   Your love and affection are not up for sale and are not a bargaining chip.  He deserves them because he is your husband.

Be Supportive

A husband needs and deserves his wife’s support.  He needs it to get through a tough spell at work, to get through a death in the family, to get through sickness, job loss and a thousand other big and little things that he might go through.  Be there for him, always.

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I realize that there are probably more things that I could discuss, but these really get at the heart of what men want and deserve from a wife.  A good marriage is not a one way street where it simply falls into a woman’s lap and she ends up with a ring on her finger.  It is something that must be worked at before, during and after the wedding.  It is something that must be worked at until death during the hard times and during the good times.  Things going smoothly does not mean that it’s time to let go and become complacent.  It means that it’s time to figure out how to make it even better.

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