November 30, 2007

Love & Respect - Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

The Love She Most Desires / The Respect He Desperately Needs

I have been reading a fantastic book by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs called Love & Respect. Eggerichs' believes that wives' and husbands' basic emotional need is different: husbands ultimately needing unconditional respect from their wives, and wives desiring unconditional love from their husbands. Eggerichs argues that these needs feed off each other and describes it using a diagram called the "Crazy Cycle."

While writing the book, he discovered that most wives weren't sure how to show respect to their husbands, and husbands were in the dark when it came to showing how much they loved their wives. This didn't necessarily mean that either the wife lacked respect for her husband, or her husband lacked love for his wife. But both needed help in showing their respect and love to each other.

The acronym C-H-A-I-R-S was born to give wives practical ways they can show unconditional respect toward their husband.

C- Conquest: "the natural, inborn desire to go out and conquer the challenges of his world--to work and achieve." Some practical ways Eggerichs encourages wives to show respect toward their husbands have to do with appreciating his desire to work and achieve:
  • tell him verbally or in wiriting that you value his work efforts
  • express your faith in him related to his chosen field
  • listen to his work stories as closely as you expect him to listen to your accounts of what happens in the family
  • see yourself as his helpmate and counterpart and talk with him about this whenever possible
  • allow him to dream as you did when you were courting/dating
  • don't dishonor or subtly criticize his work "in the field" to get him to show more love "in the family"

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