There is an old saying that, if a man lavished half as much interest and affection upon his wife after marriage as he did be’ fore, the number of divorces would be cut in half. If you own a car, you realize that constant care must be given to it, if it is to remain in first’dass condition. If you know anything about gar’ dening, you know that plants and flowers necessitate constant care; otherwise, they wither and die. Love is a delicate flower, which must be constantly watched and tended, if it is to bios’ som and give forth its delicate fragrance. If it is neglected, it, too, will fade and perish. The way to keep love ever young and fresh is to keep on loving!
For love is like the fairy wedding’cake; the more it is given away, the larger it grows. The more love you give, the more you will receive. The well of love is inexhaustible, and you will find that the more of it you give, the richer you will become.
Little things will make a woman happy: a kind word, a compliment, a bunch of flowers, a thoughtful act. If you think that your wife’s cake is delicious, or that she looks exceptionally pretty tonight, why not tell her so? These little touches of flattery are what a woman thrives on, and affect her as deeply as some expensive present. Many rich men give their wives plenty of money: but their wives are, nevertheless, dissatisfied because their husbands do not pay sufficient attention to them personally. It is this personal attention that counts.
Let your wife see that she is still attractive to you, and that you still love her. Above all, keep telling her so! Don’t be jeal’ ous of your wife of the attentions other men pay to her. After all, this is an indirect compliment to you. No man wants a woman who is obviously not attractive to other men, and vice versa. If you feel assured that your wife really loves you, a little “change of air” on occasion will do her good, just as it would you. She will love and appreciate you all the more; and if mutual trust is present, you need have no fear that a little semi’flirtation now and then will seriously affect her relations to you. She will appreciate your confidence in her all the more.
It is a great mistake for a man to be so engrossed in his own thoughts and interests that he has no time to pay attention to those of his wife, for she has her special interests too. She likes to discuss these interests with you now and then; and if you manifest no interest, she will find someone to whom she can talk. Your wife had her friends before marriage, too; and it is only natural that she should retain a certain affectionate regard for some of them, too. Many married couples make the mistake of cutting themselves off entirely from their old friends after marriage; but if these interests involve nothing to be ashamed of, they should be retained. You should welcome your wife’s old friends, if you expect her to welcome yours.
Too great familiarity after marriage is a great mistake. Every woman feels that she wishes to “keep something back”, to have something yet in reserve, one mystery yet unsolved! Many men brush all the bloom off the peach at once, and then complain that there is none left. Let your wife have her boudoir, and toilet secrets, and leave them undisturbed. Every woman, like every man, desires (and should have) a certain amount of privacy, no matter how intimate their lives may be. This should never be intruded upon; and if husbands and wives recognized this, they would preserve the charm and romance of married life far longer than it is preserved at present.
The sexual side of marriage is, and will always remain, a highly important factor; and this should be surrounded with a certain halo of novelty and romance. If this is allowed to become dull and mechanical, instead of varied and thrilling, your wife’s feelings toward you will necessarily cool. Many men make the mistake of thinking that the actual size of the male organ determines the degree of pleasure which the wife receives from the sexual act. This is anything but true. It is not the size which counts nearly as much as the general angle of approach and the subsequent movements and contacts. Stimulation of the clitoris and the entrance to the vagina are as thrilling to a woman as the penetration of the penis itself. This must be taken into account in the preliminary love-play.
There are some who contend that the sexual act should only be indulged in for the purpose of procreation, and at no other time. With this extreme view, no modem psychologist would agree. In the first place, it is impractical: so long as human nature is human nature, men and women will continue to indulge in sex, regardless of what some ultra-moralists might say. In the second place, it is now everywhere admitted that intercourse does neither the wife nor the unborn child harm, except during the very last days of pregnancy. In the third place, while it is true that no other animal will permit intercourse after pregnancy has taken place (the female having no desire for sex), this is not true in the case of human beings, for the normal woman craves it as much at such times as she does at any other. Emotional and spiritual qualities are attached to sex, in human beings, which are absent in the animal world; for these reasons, if the man and wife truly love one another, they desire this close union, when each feels a part of the other, and
when a sort of inter-penetration is possible, attainable in no other way. The pleasure side of sex is perfectly natural and justifiable, and is obviously intended by nature to be as extended and as lasting as possible.
The satisfactory completion of the sex-act leaves the system calm and in repose; cares are forgotten, jittery nerves quieted, and a general feeling of contentment suffuses the whole being. If this is attained by both husband and wife, it will go far towards making their married life contented and happy. If the sexual life is harmonious, one may be assured that the general life will be, to a great extent, harmonious too.