On the one hand, there are men who do what they can to fulfil their own needs and, on the other, there are men who do what they can to please others. What this can bring to mind is someone who doesn’t give a damn about others, or someone who cares too much about others.
More Than Two Options
However, even if a man puts his needs first, it doesn’t mean that he won’t reach out to others. In fact, he could be known as someone who is kind and generous, and this will show that he is a not a self-centred human being.
And just because a man always puts other people’s needs first, it doesn’t therefore mean that he is a selfless human being either. This could simply be a way for him to try to get his needs met.
A Grey Area
What this shows it that this is not something that is black and white, even though it may seem to be. Yet, if a man is a people pleaser in one area of his life, it doesn’t mean that he will be this way in all areas of his life.
For example, a man could stand his ground and pay attention to his own needs whilst he is at work, but he could soon change when he is around a woman. Or, he could end up becoming someone else when he is around his parents.
It could be said that the ideal will be for him to pay attention to his own needs in every area of his life. When he can do this, it is going to allow him to be authentic, which will make it easier for him to live a fulfilling life.
How he behaves around people is generally going to be a reflection of his true-self, as opposed to an act that he puts on to receive positive feedback from people. Through being this way, it is also going to be far easier for him to be himself around women.
He will have clear idea of where he begins and ends, and a clear idea of where a woman begins and ends. This will allow him to tune into his own needs and to feel safe enough to fulfil them.
As a result of this, he will be able to act like an individual around a woman as opposed to an extension of her. He will be able to decide how he behaves, which will give her the chance to connect to who he is.
Through feeling comfortable in his own skin, it will also give him the ability to speak out and to express his own views. This is not to say that he will go out of his way to offend others, but at the same time, it also doesn’t mean that he will hold back out of a fear of offending others either.
Now, this may mean that it is not common for him to rub people up the wrong way, but this is part of being an authentic human being. How this man experiences life is going to be very different to how a man experiences life when he has the need to please others.
What is going on within him is not going to have much of an effect on how he behaves; what is likely to have the biggest effect on how he behaves is what is going on without. In general, he could come across as easy going, and then have moments when he plays a certain role.
So, regardless of whether he is at work, around a woman, or with his family, he could behave as though he is an extension of others, or, this could just be how he is around women. Either way, what this means is that he is not going to assert himself in every area of his life – at times, he will do what he can to fulfil the needs of the people around him.
Consequently, he may find that he is not very successful with the opposite sex, and this may mean that he rarely gets his needs met in this area of his life. Thus, this area of his life could be like a desert.
Alternatively, he could have women in his life from time to time but, he may find that he often ends up being walked over. It could then seem as though he doesn’t do enough, yet it is more likely that he does too much.
When he is with a woman, he is likely to do just about everything he can to try to make her happy. His needs are then going to be put to one side - that’s if he is even aware what his needs are - and to focus on the woman’s needs.
This is likely to be something that just happens when he is with a woman and not something that he has to consciously think about. It is then as if he believes that it is his responsibility to make a woman happy.
A Weak Sense of Self
If he had strong boundaries, it would be clear that it is not up to him to make anyone happy, let alone the women that he spends time with. He would be in touch with his own needs and feel safe enough to fulfil them.
His need to be accepted is going to be one of the needs that are driving his behaviour and when this doesn’t happen, he could end up feeling rejected, worthless, and even abandoned. During the moments when he can’t please a woman, he may come into contact with these feelings.
The way that a man like this behaves around a woman has a lot in common with how a child behaves around a self-absorbed mother. When a mother is focused on her own needs and the child’s father is not around or is simply emotionally unavailable, the child can end up being used to fulfil her needs.
Instead of paying attention to the child’s needs and giving the child what it needs in order to grow and develop, the child disconnects from themselves and becomes an extension of the mother. Through being used in this way as a child, it is then normal for them to grow into an adult who is out of touch with their own needs and feelings, has a weak sense of self, and believes that it is their duty to please a woman.
It is going to be essential for the man to get in touch with his own needs and to develop boundaries. Another part of this process will be for him to integrate the masculine aspect within them.
One of the ways that this can take place is by working through the pain that he experienced as a child and has experienced as an adult. The assistance of a therapist or a healer may be needed here.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.