In my post from three weeks ago, I shared that it is unwise to chase men. And, that if you find yourself doing the chasing, you should:
- Stop sleeping with him.
- Stop chasing him.
- Stop thinking your expectations for being chased are too high.
- Stop responding to lame and inconsistent initiation from him.
This week, I will address #3: Stop thinking your expectations for being chased are too high.
This seems to be a very common battle that goes on with us women. We fluctuate between two different beliefs. The first belief comes from the deepest desires of our hearts and the hope that we will be loved and cherished, chased and pursued by our beloved.
The second belief happens when that hope is not fulfilled. It is the false belief that because our hope is not fulfilled, our expectations for being loved and cherished, chased and pursued are too high. So, we start to feel guilty and needy. We know what we need from a man and yet when we are not receiving it, we start to wonder if it is even possible and are we worth it? Are our expectations too high?
Is it Possible?
When I was single, I observed many couples. Some couples made me think, “That’s the kind of marriage I desire!” But there were plenty of couples that made me think, “Oh goodness, is that what marriage is like?! Yikes!”
I’d like to share with you an excerpt from my book because it reminds me of the time in my life when I was not getting what I needed from the guys I was dating. Just when I was about to give in and believe that maybe my expectations were too high, I would witness the first kind of couple. The kind of couple that reminded me of the kind of marriage I desired and hoped for. And, my determination and hope would be restored. Jim and Regan were one of those wonderful couples. Here is their story:
“I just received a Christmas card from a couple that I met about 23 years ago. The husband, Jim, and I were young engineers together working in the same office. His wife, Regan, had a good job working for a lawyer and later became a stay-at-home Mom. They were married young and during the time I knew them they had five children. I lost touch with them about 15 years ago but then I reconnected with them a couple of years ago. We just send Christmas cards now but it is enough for me to smile and remember them and the impact they had on me.
Jim and Regan clearly had what I longed for as a single girl; a happy marriage with a man who would make me feel loved, cherished, chased and pursued. But, they were special. They practiced chastity before their marriage and were open to life within their marriage. Yes, they had five children, which seems like a lot, but they were all ‘wanted” and for the most part, all planned. They used natural family planning (NFP).
My insight into their marriage was provided by Jim and wow did he adore Regan! It was like nothing I had ever seen before. God bless Jim because he graciously, but respectfully, witnessed to me about the power of chastity. I believe the point of him sharing their personal story with me was to encourage me on in my own weakening commitment to chastity.
Regan was committed to chastity and set the standard high even as a young girl in high school and college. And, Jim gladly met the standard. He had to have her. He had to convince her to marry him. She wanted to be an actress (locally) but the impressive wooing from Jim convinced her to marry him instead.
I wish I could describe to you his face when he would talk about her. Each time they had a new baby, Regan would visit our office. She looked so happy. I mean, she beamed! Jim told me that several minutes after giving birth she would say, “Let’s do that again!”
I have a friend who worked with Regan at the law office. My friend was a receptionist and would occasionally have to take a phone message for Regan. She told me that when Regan got a message that read ‘Jim called’, she would get a big smile and her eyes would light up. The description from my friend led me to believe that Regan somehow floated away on a cloud of happiness. This was a completely independent, but identical, observation by my friend and me about this couple.
Did they have perfect marriage? I am certain they had their challenges, especially financially. Jim drove the old station wagon with the wood panels on the side and Regan drove an old and very big van. But, they were not caught up in status and materialism which is often a death-blow to marriages. They had everything their hearts desired. They had each other and all these cute children that bonded them in love. They had a strong Catholic faith and they lived and practiced it. They built their life on the Rock rather than on sand and they were firmly grounded. I knew, even back then, that they could withstand any storm.
I wanted what they had and was convinced that Regan’s chastity was the key to their bliss. They practiced NFP so there were times when they chose to abstain from the marital embrace. They were young and very fertile. But, when the door was ‘open’ again, you could almost read it on Jim’s face. He was a very committed and brilliant engineer. But, on the “door open” evenings, he left the office promptly at 4:00pm with a spring in his step and a slight blush in his cheek. The silent message was “Goodbye everyone, I have a date with my wife tonight!”
So, as I am writing this book, I get this beautiful Christmas card from them, still in love and surrounded by their five grown children. Regan and Jim are still glowing. Ah, chastity.”
So, yes it is possible. And, no your expectations of being loved, cherished, chased and pursued are not too high.
Are We Worth It?
My answer here may surprise you. I visited a girlfriend of mine the other day and we got to chatting about our wonderful husbands. I shared with her that I think it is amazing that my husband can love me so much given all my faults. I wasn’t being self-deprecating. I was stating my belief that his love for me is supernatural and that I believe Superabundance changes his vision of me.
I contend that the Superabundance, which results from our chaste marriage, significantly diminishes my faults and almost makes them invisible to my Holy Spouse. I also believe that Superabundance somehow then magnifies my good traits. Chastity allows for superabundance and good fruits to flow. These good fruits result in that interior gaze that Blessed Pope John Paul II talks about in his famous Wednesday talks referred to as Theology of the Body. For example, he said to his General Audience on January 2, 1980:
“Seeing each other, as if through the mystery of creation, man and woman see each other even more fully and distinctly than through the sense of sight itself, that is, through the eyes of the body. They see and know each other with all the peace of the interior gaze, which creates precisely the fullness of the intimacy of persons.”
So, no I am not worth it. Not by myself. Not without the grace of Superabundance.
I contend that we are covered by a veil and only the one that God intends for us to marry, our Holy Spouse, can see us. If you are not being loved and cherished, chased and pursued by the guy you are dating, it has nothing to do with your “worth.” I contend that it is because he can’t see you. But, your Holy Spouse will see you and he will like what he sees!
God designed us. He knows what we women need. He put those desires in our hearts.
Your expectations for being loved, cherished, chased and pursued are not too high. Commit to Chastity. Wait on your Holy Spouse. Wait on our dear Lord.
Next week I will discuss why you should stop responding to lame and inconsistent initiation from men.