Glenn Stok studies topics on self-awareness and emotional well-being and writes about it to help others with mindfulness and self-doubt.
Men have various reasons for failing to commit to a permanent relationship and get married. A mindset focused on problems and concerns doesn't help much. This discussion should add some clarity for men and help recognize what they may be overlooking.
There is a consensus that a fear of commitment indicates commitment-phobia. But the same men have no trouble committing to other things in life, such as making a good home, helping people, and working on their career. There's never a fear of committing to these things.
So, do men only have a fear of a love relationship? The following is a guide with five solutions to consider.
Lack of Communication Gets in the Way
In some cases, men get stuck with their stubbornness and end up losing a good opportunity with a great person.
I know. I've been there. We do want to settle down and build a life together, so we'll have beautiful memories to look back on later in life. However, we need to realize it while the opportunity exists.
Communication is imperative. It's crucial to share feelings, and both partners must be willing to share. It's a two-way street. If we are in a relationship with a non-communicator, that's a real problem that needs attention.
Discussing the feelings and thoughts that we have can open the door for the partners to work on a solution, rather than let the relationship stagnate until one decides to leave.
Overlooking Quality Can Sabotage a Relationship
I'm going to describe a personal experience to give an important example.
I was in relationships where I became frustrated with one thing or another, sometimes for good reasons where there were real red flags. However, there were times when I was unwilling to recognize the quality of my girlfriend.
Because of that, I lost out on what might have been a wonderful life-long relationship.
Here's the example: My girlfriend was still living with her parents at the age of 37. We had mutual love and understanding, and we appreciated each other's strengths and weaknesses. I felt like it was a safe haven being with her—what a wonderful feeling.
We discussed the possibility of marriage, but I thought that she should live on her own first. I had this silly notion of seeing how she functioned on her own first.
How silly that was. Who cares if she didn't learn certain things because she was still with her parents? She can learn later.
When I moved out on my own at the age of 20, I quickly learned the three C's—cooking, cleaning, and caring for myself.
I remember when I first cooked rice and didn't realize how much it expands. I ended up making enough rice for a whole week! I noticed how quickly dust appears from nowhere, and I learned the importance of keeping a clean home. I learned how to schedule my bedtime, so I'd be fresh for work the next day.
The point I'm making is that anyone can learn how to cook and take care of things eventually.
I wasn't considering all the wonderful things I had already known about her. She was kind, considerate, easygoing, and paid attention to other people's needs. What more could one ask? Does your girlfriend have qualities that you admire?
Imagining unrealistic faults can sabotage the process of leading to commitment.
Minor Issues Can Affect Your Judgment
When good things are going on with your partner, and you know in your heart that you have a quality relationship, don’t let minor issues appear to be red flags that you are just making up in your mind.
Living at home with her parents at the age of 37 was not a red flag. I just made it into one with the previous example. I was judgmental and forgot about all the positive things I already knew about her. I was stubbornly focusing on my silly need to see her living independently.
Don't let stubborn obsessions with minor issues make you lose focus on what's important.
Focus on Positive Characteristics
There are always red flags in some cases with certain people, and I've experienced my share of them. However, believing that tends to make us expect it with every new relationship.
We should consciously be paying attention to everything good about our mate, and the relationship in general.
If we overlook the positive, we may end up focusing on the unpleasant things and make those things more severe in our minds than they are.
People tend to remember disappointments without any effort. But why is it that we forget the wonderful experiences we have with someone.
Commitment is more natural when we remember the good things. Make an effort to direct your focus on the positive characteristics of your partner.
Maintain Emotional Availability
The one we are with could very well have her act together and might be the exceptional person we want to live with for the rest of our life. The only way we would know that is to be emotionally available.
Emotional availability is required to give full attention to a relationship. We need to be fully involved emotionally to be aware of our feelings about the relationship.
When we are deeply immersed emotionally, we would see the quality of the person we are with and appreciate them. We would notice the good things that we might otherwise overlook. That observation would create a definite feeling of joy and comfort. There's just no way one would hesitate to make that permanent.
- Communicate about all your feelings.
- Imagining unrealistic faults can cause hesitation to commit.
- Overlook minor issues that could create poor judgment.
- Pay attention to everything that's good.
- Recognize the quality of the person you're with and give the relationship full attention.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2009 Glenn Stok
What Are Your Thoughts About Commitment?
Glenn Stok (author) from Long Island, NY on December 11, 2009:
You are very much in tune with the problem, anglfire. I like your additional thoughts about it going so much further beyond physical, emotional and love. Relationships are truly very complex. Your comments reinforce what I further wrote about in my relationship book. I am also honored to have you as a fan. Thanks for your comments and for being a fan.
anglfire693 from Detroit, Michigan on December 10, 2009:
I completely understand your story Glenn, from experience. It seems that a lot of men are like that today. Yes, the girl has to be attractive and they have to have something, but then even beyond that, there are all these qualifications and conditions and if you don't fit some perfect mold, for some reason, they will move on to the next girl who does, even if he isn't as attracted to her physically, mentally and emotionally. But maybe she owns her home and I live in an apartment or maybe she doesn't have kids and I do or maybe she has a better job....and it's not just me, I have male friends that I hear do this and girlfriends who guys have done it to them. I think this is why so many marriages end in divorce today because men are more concerned about things that you can work out, figure out, work out together and the whole soul mate, perfect match, match made in heaven, the perfect fit, the whole, "you complete me" theory just doesn't hold the weight that it should...it goes so much further beyond just physical, emotional connections and love so often now a days! And I honestly believe that is why so many marriages end in divorce because people are picking their mates on factors that can be worked on or come and go, change, end...but the person, they are always going to be that person.
Glenn Stok (author) from Long Island, NY on November 14, 2009:
LRobbins, Thanks for being the first to comment on my hub. You hit it right on the button, and I think that "focusing on the big picture" is the key to commitment.
Laurel from Germany on November 13, 2009:
Thanks for sharing your story. I agree with your advice and that it's easy to get hung up on little things and not focus on the big picture.