1. It takes two people to co-create a love relationship, but only one person to end it.
2. Men (statistically) suffer more after breakups and divorces than women*.
3. Men generally benefit more from being in a committed love relationship/marriage than women do**, but are frequently less informed about what makes love work.
4. A peaceful and sustainable future of humanity depends on changing our sexual selection process, and this change needs to come from men***.
Men are still largely expected to approach and pursue women, take the risk of rejection, and pay for dates and diamond rings. This makes some sense, because men generally benefit more from being in love relationships than women do when it comes to life expectancy, physical and emotional health, income, career, and sexual satisfaction**, while this is only true for women in healthy relationships.
Statistics and men’s experiences (and certainly mine) tell us that women end over 70% of all relationships and marriages.
As a result, most men suffer more emotionally (because they don’t have the emotional support system in place that most women do, and often overly focus on their partner for intimacy**) and financially after a breakup or divorce. One indicator for this dynamic is the ten-times higher suicide rate of divorced fathers compared with divorced mothers*.
Nevertheless, women buy and read over 90% of all relationship books and typically outnumber men 3 to 1 in relationship seminars and workshops–unless they have sex in their title and content.
After my second marriage ended very amicably and I started dating again, I asked myself for a while why so many women left me and other men, and worked on improving my relationship skills. But then I started wondering why I and other men got involved with women in the first place who would eventually dump us. A few months after yet another women had left me on July 15, 2006, just a few days after we had returned from a trip to Germany where I introduced her to my family and a visit to Paris (that I paid for), I realized how Ken Wilber’s Integral model would allow me to make better predictions about compatibility and the outcome of my love relationships.
As I wrote down my thoughts that eventually turned into Integral Relationships: A Manual for Men (which also resonates with some women) and applied the Integral map to the territory of my relationships, my love life improved tremendously. Instead of breaking my heart and bank account, most women that I dated and romantically related with became my friends.
As I finished writing the book in 2010, I also realized that a peaceful and sustainable future for all humanity depends largely on changing our sexual selection process, and that this change needs to come from men***.
Integral Relationships covers:
– Primary sexual fantasies of males and females and how to celebrate them instead of being unconsciously driven by them.
– Primary emotional reactions of shame in males and fear in females and how to stop the downward spiral.
– Learned gender roles and how to transcend them.
– Feminine/masculine polarities and how to create synergy between them.
– Multiple intelligences, passions, interests, values and needs that connect.
– Levels of consciousness, spiritual, anima/animus complex, and sexual development that need to be compatible for relationships to thrive.
– States of love and how to navigate them for lasting relationships.
– Love Languages and Enneagram types that allow them to deepen their connection.
– Four essential dimensions of our individual human existence and how to move from “me” to “we”, to “us” to “all of us” and “all of it”.
– Mutually compatible unconscious dimensions (shadow and untapped potentials) that allow them to heal and grow in their relationships.
– Dimensions of intimacy, passion and commitment that need to be balanced and harmonized for a relationship to be sustainable.
– (In)compatibilities between partners and when to stay and when to leave a relationship.
– Importance of co-created love relationships between opposite partners with equal rights and responsibilities for a peaceful and sustainable future of all humanity.
Integrally informed men who are in a relationship can identify growth potentials that allow them to deepen their loving connection on the levels of body, mind, heart, and soul/spirit.
Integrally informed single men receive a clear road map to finding/attracting and identifying compatible partners for the co-creation of sustainable relationships between opposites and equals.
Women who are interested in healthy sustainable relationships greatly benefit from partnering with Integrally informed men.
* See Patricia Love, Steven Stosny “How to Improve your Marriage Without Talking About It page 46: “The devastating effects of divorce on men present a strong argument for the fact that his partner provides the meaning of his life.”
Laurie A. Rudman and Peter Glick “The Social Psychology of Gender” page 223 – 225: “Thoughts of ending the relationship are especially physically taxing and aversive for men.”
http://jech.bmj.com/content/57/12/993.full and www.afsp.org/ in 2004 overall US male suicides 25,907, female suicides 6,730.
** See Institute of American Values (www.americanvalues.org/) “Why Marriage Matters, Second Edition: Twenty-Six Conclusions from the Social Sciences” and Patricia Love and Steven Stosny “How To Improve Your Marriage Without Talking About It” introduction page 3: “Research and clinical experience also tell us that marriage and committed love relationships are more important to the health and well-being of men than women. Divorced men do not work as well or live as long or “survive” with anything like the quality of life enjoyed by married men. They are at considerably higher risk of alcoholism, suicide, physical and mental illness, unemployment, car crashes, and other accidents. They lose contact with friends, stop going to church or social groups, and eventually isolate themselves completely, except for whatever company they can find in a bar. In short, they lose meaning and purpose. Without a partner, men just go through the motions of living.”
*** I suggest that men should become integrally informed about relationships and take responsibility for their sexual selection process to end their own suffering (if they still do), the suffering of women (if they still cause them suffering), and the suffering of the planet (if they contribute to it). We as men cannot ask (or expect) women to fix those things for us and themselves. From there, YES, as women do their part of the work (e.g. Elizabeth Debold’s 10 Core Values for Evolving Women), we can become co-creators with equal rights and responsibilities in Evolutionary Integral Relationships. This slowly starts to happen at an Integral level and beyond, while women and men at earlier stages of development naturally fight this idea and blame each other for their problems and the problems in the world.