Updated: Nov 21, 2020
Man The Maze was created from within my spirit with a desire, that desire is to help men be the best man they can be, clearing away the fog and dark clouds that may tamper with their right judgements. When I look around I see a void of male voices stepping forward to stand on the hill and shine light against the programmed boxes the world likes to fit men into. On a planet that is shaped by billions of people and their relationships with other human beings, what kind of values are being defined by the continued adoption of certain gender stereotypes and decision making? Going one step further from gender stereotyped culture, what is the world's attitude towards values and doing right generally? How does that shape the definition of faithfulness within its own right and within relationships?
So before we can delve into the subject of men being faithful, let's define what faithfulness is aside from the distorted ideologies that have started to climb their way into secular society. The Merriam Webster dictionary defines being faithful in 3 ways: 1: steadfast in affection or allegiance : LOYAL a faithful friend 2: firm in adherence to promises or in observance of duty : CONSCIENTIOUS a faithful employee 3: given with strong assurance : BINDING a faithful promise
Its very nature is loyal, conscientious and binding and so it should prove true that if you are faithful then you will show these attributes within your character. On the contrary, if you don't have loyalty within your principles, or if your word is easily broken, how is it possible for you to then be faithful? I married my stunning Wife Latoya at the age of 28, very young the majority of people would say however our relationship was built on the very values and substance of faithfulness.
We cannot allow the notions of worldly, timeline thinking to override faithful decision making which is steadfast and binding as you already heard. The ugly truth is that things are changing around us and I dread to say, I believe not for the best.
Traditions, values, the sanctity of marriage is being diluted by the perceived easy option of divorce and substituted for a world that wants no law and to be sexually free to explore all genders and volume of lovers in the bedroom. To be faithful, you must first know the real meaning of the word, with a world that is so very temporal it has confused people into thinking that being faithful is a temporary act. An act of good behavior or good deeds, isn't it clear that this is a false cloak that does nothing for your identity? I challenge you to provoke your own processing of what it means to be faithful and I assure you that things will become clearer once you stop to consider.
I believe that the healthiest faithfulness is that which starts toward your inner self.
If you are faithful to the man you want to be, then you will always have a stimulus to give from when you are being faithful to others. If I am being 110% honest, the truest form of faithfulness is that in Jesus but I also respect that many will not have accepted this path or may have other beliefs in a higher power, religion or something else. I encourage you to read on and hear my advice on how to be faithful to your Wife because regardless of beliefs, you can implement them. My childhood shaped who I wanted to be because I saw the many bad examples of men who could not be faithful to my mother and the wreckage it caused others as well as themselves.
Casting judgement aside it is very insightful to analyze why people do these things and unsurprisingly they all follow a similar stream. Any man I have known in my life that I would say is unfaithful has literally in every case lacked identity and was seeking acceptance outside themselves. As guys we all have a tendency to need validation from others when we are younger however some men don't grow out of it and the need for approval meets no end. This I believe is what drives men into cheating and is especially obvious when a father abandons his family.
The hard reality of accountability weighs heavy, the focus is taken off the man and the validation he received within the relationship is diverted towards the children.
Without communication and opening up about this vulnerability, the excitement subsides and he then enters an escapism mindset.
Once this happens it can drive some men to look for a blast of so-called happiness wherever their endorphins are released most, women, drugs, drink, gambling or whatever the vice. There is no avoiding the fact that we all experience pain in small, medium and large doses but in many cases it's our emotional reaction to it that determines our actions, then circumstances. It's been said that hurt people- hurt people, there is an element of this but I have evaluated that it is fuller than that.
Some guys are conditioned from their childhood environment to not be faithful because their fathers were not faithful so there was no leadership, poor mentorship, some see a relationship with the wrong lens because they fear they are being controlled which could be a deeper issue of freedom.
The stark contrast here however is that it really depends on a mans projected view of the woman or a relationship itself. One man can be in love and happy but wrongly process that his freedom is gone, whereas another man in love sees his Wife as part of his freedom.
To those men whose fathers were a bad example, some sons choose to be like their father but there are those who decide immediately that they do not want to be anything like that character that ripped their family apart. If a man has not worked on himself and his inner trials prior to having children, this is a ticking time bomb and the explosion causes hurtful carnage difficult to repair vs him dealing with it in advance. This is not just the case for couples. It is our perception of faithfulness as a priority or not that determines whether we will exercise it against all the elements as a relationship with or without children matures. I have been with Toya for 13 years and if I was to pinpoint the love and why faithfulness is so strong, I would say I honor, respect, trust and commit to her within my own spirit. Through my honor, respect and prioritisation of Toya in the early years of building our relationship it created a connection which would inevitably make her feel loved and give it back. At the same time being loved by her , respected and encouraged gave me inner peace and belief in myself which enabled a perfect place for love to grow both ways. You have to realize that this doesn't just happen, it is a choice from the very moment you realize you want to settle with the lady in your life and commit, not just when you are marrying them. Committing in Spirit is giving your true person to the other, so many of us guys in the world instead commit by feelings, thoughts, and emotions but what happens when those ever changing elements turn negative? Yes, the relationship or perception of the relationship also turns negative along with your mood, energy, or poor thought habits. You cant hinge your happiness on variables, it basically determines your perspective to be on an emotional rollercoaster with no stability. You cannot also switch a button on and off, the attitude you set on that relationship early, defines the course it will take later.
This leads me to my advice on how to stay faithful to your Wife, why you should stay faithful:
1) Set The Tone + Attitude Immediately In Your Relationship Because It Intensifies and Grows. If you don't respect her enough to be loyal early, you won't be loyal later, if you don't work on building that stable foundation early, the battle to fill the cracks will be harder later. If you are a guy that has started off in on a rocky road (who hasn't), there's nothing better than a comeback story, women love a resilient man who gets up when he falls.
I remember meeting Toya on our first date and I knew immediately she was so special, unique and I would need to treat her exactly that way. 2) Give Your Wife Undeniable Trust In You By Actions - Not Only Words We can all say I love you but I learnt early on with Toya that actions say it all, you can be silent and show love in action but love without action can be questioned. If you keep coming home drunk and your Wife is hurt by it but you say you love her, telling her 100 more times will not change anything, only showing her you listened will.
By gaining trust through actions it helps you realize the importance of gained trust, understand how rewarding it is allows you to stay trustworthy whilst receiving it back from your spouse too. 3)Open Up Your Vulnerability Realize early on that communication is the basis of all good relationships and miscommunication is the root of all bad ones.
Pride can prevent men from opening up about weaknesses or how we feel when our Wife does something we don't like or if something is making you anxious in the relationship, don't hide it. By bringing it out of your head, you allow it to be addressed and not alone, you address it together and this is one of the strongest ways to become more united. Life has a number of hardships, marriage isnt easy and neither is life, but by battling all things together you become a force rather than a fatigued individual fighting a losing war. You find that when you make it through storms together it does something, it's special.
4) Don't Live in Fantasy World This is so unbelievably vital to all men, we are dreamers and create action movies in our head which isn't bad however it is when you let your thought life create scenarios with other women. If you are in public or anywhere and a woman captures your attention because of a short skirt, low cut shirt or yoga pants for example, don't allow yourself to fall into the trap of programmed signal thinking.
From a young age we are exposed to sexualized pictures of women on TV, Media and films that it becomes a trigger behavior to automatically look whenever you see some skin in your peripheral, however you can change this.
The reason you want to change it is that you have the power to control your thinking and its important that you do, men can look at a woman and think about her within a story created in 30 seconds but none of it is good for you. Clock the habit, take back control and don't allow your mind to wander into a place of unrealistic imagery, bring it back to who you love and what you have and choose to remove any recurring images your mind concocted that contradict who are or want to be as a man.
Your real fantasy land is with your Wife, enjoy the every day things you have the opportunity to share together, you built it and so protect it.
Jonny Cash was asked to describe his idea of paradise, bare in mind he experienced all the material things life could offer and all the adventure. He said "This morning, with her, having coffee".
He also found Jesus.
5) Practice Gratitude Very simple, don't let your daily work life or routine take all of your time and attention, think about your Wife and what you have created together, never take it for granted and it will help you remain in the place of someone who is loved, who loves and who will protect it at all cost. 6) Choose Your Environments If you know you your work friends are heading to a strip club, you are not a teenager swayed by peer pressure, be a man and say no. What good comes from going there? Can you trust that a woman wont come onto you, can you trust that you wont drink past mindfulness and do something you regret? Can you trust yourself seeing other women naked, does it honor your Wife? If you know that someone else finds you attractive, do you put yourself into their space or do you keep your distance? If you had gambling issues and promised your Wife you would not do it again, are you faithful to stay away from the casino? The point is, its a choice and its much better to enforce a disciplined decision to avoid environments that threaten your marriage, if you struggle in an area, why throw yourself into shark infested waters. 7) Have Boundaries With Other Women This splits opinion because there are some who believe flirting is healthy, harmless and makes them feel good but this quite simply, is wrong. How was your marriage started? How did you fall in love with your Wife? You took an interest in each other, gave each other your time on a regular basis, opened up and learned about each other, grew affection, touched... So now think about a girl in the office where people spend 90% of their time, Monday- Friday, what outcome will manifest if you continually pursue that level of interest with another women vs the lack of contact with your Wife during the day. Boundaries are good and they protect the things you really do value, no rush of endorphin release from validation of another woman can ever measure up to your marriage.
8) Tell Your Wife You Love Her And Tell Yourself That You Love Her Too: Speak it, act it, feel it. We aren't too Manly to say I love you, I tell my Wife all the time and I need to hear it too. It never gets old and when relationships get older and children are added, hearing reminders are even more important. You saying it also reminds yourself every day, you think it sounds weird because you should know it anyway but life and death are in the power of the tongue. 9) Don't Be Neglected Intimately/ Don't Neglect Intimacy and Sexual Needs Within Marriage: Tiredness, busy schedules, mood swings or any other factor are no valid reason for letting this slide. This is serious dammit :) Men need to speak up if they feel they are being neglected in this space, communication is fundamental to ensuring each other knows the importance of what it means. Sex in marriage is one of the main things that makes a man feel closer and connected to his woman. Its scriptural too :) Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.~ Proverbs 5:18-19 The husband should fulfill his wife’s sexual needs, and the wife should fulfill her husband’s needs- 1 Corinthians 7.3 I have more if needed... locked and loaded, ready to go :) 10) Don't Catastrophize & Think Its The End If you think its the end of something or fear the worst you tend to go into fight or flight mode mentally and therefore are likely to lose care for consequences and actions. You might be going through a rough patch financially or are finding it hard to get time with your Wife due to work, it doesn't mean you guys are finished. I had to learn this, after having 3 kids in 4 years time became limited for Toya and Me to have fun alone, adventures together. I kept saying nonsense like we are not the same.. of course we weren't the same, we had no kids before and all the time in the world! It wasn't the end because all the foundations and love remained in place, it was just the changing circumstances and my reaction to change that resorted in me listening to wrong thoughts. 11) Embrace Change and Transformation In Your Relationship As time goes by you change and so does your Wife, you mature, you adopt different views, you grow grey hairs, but see it as an adventure together. Too much transformation can be a shock if only 1 is doing it so try and stay interested in each others pursuits, encouraging each other and also do things that help you also grow together. 12) Pray Together Its not weird and it will actually blow your mind the different dimension you can explore in your marriage by connecting spiritually. If you don't want to pray, find time to go together in a quiet place without noise, without technology and be at peace with your thoughts. Then discuss it together, you will be so surprised at the visions you get, the tranquility that you feel , that this will be something you surprisingly take up more often.
12) Keep Your Identity By Having Your Own Time You can be so devoted to your Wife and when Kids come along, them too that you begin to forget yourself. At the time you think its the ultimate sign of devotion and love to give your all, but what good is it when you start doubting yourself and lose confidence? Some men go into a mini life crisis and it can lead to making the wrong decisions, the best course of action is to ensure you have the right balance in the first place.
"Before you can find your soulmate, you must first discover your own soul"- Charles Glassman
13) Build your Wife Up, Don't Tear Her Down Small things may irritate one another, little habits , carelessness (me) or financial but have patience, address the feeling of frustration for what it is, a feeling. The emotional feeling is just a temporary moment and not worth expressing anger towards your Wife for, have grace for her and she will have grace for you.
Doing life together is a journey, theres tough things to deal with but we all have heard that we hurt those we love most, try not to!
Dont let the outside world affect your inside world.
"Lets not forget, its you and me vs the problem, not you vs me"- Steve Maraboli
14) Sleep In The Same Bed And Don't Stay Out Of The House Past Acceptance Straight talk, distance purposely created will lead you down the wrong path, always honor your duty to be there, whatever the day threw at you, don't let anything stop you ending it joined as a unit.
15) Have The Most Faith In Each Other. Talk It, Walk It, Know It In All You Do You are her biggest fan and she is yours, dont let it be any other way. Never underestimate the power of a loved up married couple, they can shift anything in front of them. 16) Forget Your Past And Stop Comparing
Everything you have known is stored in your mind and can be accessed anytime. I think as Men there something becomes strained or negative we can go into our mind and look back at positives to make us feel better.
Relationships get tough but thinking about your freedom as a younger man does not help because it isn't real anymore. Thinking about a woman in your past or times shared as a teen, isn't real anymore.
What you have now is real and can be better if you channel your energy into improving it and being present rather than focusing on the past.
If you were to go back to your freedom as a young man you would find out real quick that you were spending all your time hoping to meet a dream woman anyway, you have her now so get out of your past and back to your NOW.
17) Don't Compare
In a world that only ever sees the surface of peoples lives, its easy to compare and feel bad about yourself or about your relationship.
You may know a couple that have it all, but behind the scenes everyone is putting out fires!
Trust me. Don't compare your reality with a false reality.
18) Dance Together
Even if its not for you, try it, there's something really unexplainable about doing it together and how close it really brings you.
I surprised my Wife when we lived in Hong Kong by buying a 3 month course of Private Salsa Lessons.
If you want a really fast way of reconnecting and bringing joy into your marriage, get dancing. We would have lessons but also continue doing it at home for free, anytime and hours would pass with many laughs. Its a great way to reconnect, be even more attracted to each other and to have fun.
19) Learn Each Others Actual Love Languages
We took a love language course, this basically teaches you more about each other and how they naturally feel loved.
I'm not saying every guy, but every guy's love language is physical touch..
Because we feel loved that way we automatically show we love our Wife by expressing it through physical touch.
But what if you learn that your Wife actually feels most loved by thoughtfulness or being surprised?
Its not to say that physical touch isn't important because, it is... But if you learn that she feels so understood when pay attention, its the best way to a healthy relationships.
Wife feels most loved by Gifts: You know she has needed make up for a long time so you go to the store and personally pick out some and then surprise her.
Wife feels most loved by Surprises: You book a surprise romantic getaway and have family look after the kids. Or she is tired so you book her a night at the spa with her friend or sister etc
Wife feels most loved by Help: You realize she is overwhelmed and without being asked you do the laundry, wash the dishes, tidy up, clean bathrooms etc
It might not seem like much but it can make the world of difference to someone who does it everyday.
Wife feels most Loved By Conversation: You avoid all distractions and make sure you are present, instigating conversations and asking questions. My Wife loves to connect on this level and I actually believe it is vital to all relationships that you dont fall into comforts and habits but always make effort to talk on a deeper level. After all, its how your relationship started in the first place!
"If you Kiss her mind, her body will follow"- Pharrell Williams
20) Love Her As The Man You Want To Be
This is it, give your all and realize your blessing, you gave your word and vows and this person deserves it all fully.
Who do you want to be?
The guy who's love and word falls like a pack of cards anytime a problem or temptation is presented
The guy that you honor and respect who cannot be shaken from his morals, values and promises?
This also relates to when you are alone without her, be the man you want to be for yourself and for her wherever you go. Don't be a conditional man, great at home within the ight setting but the opposite when outside the radar. Respect yourself, your mind, your actions, your heart and your behavior will follow.
Claude McKay put it simply "If a man is not faithful to his own individuality, he cannot be loyal to anything".
The best things in life take all of your effort to make them the best things in life.
Please share feedback and if you have questions or want to add anything to the list we would love to share it with the Man The Maze community.