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Reader seeks articles on marriage survival, not just attraction

From looks to long-term: Reader seeks articles on marriage survival, not just chivalry.

Picture: Boggi Milano

From looks to long-term: Reader seeks articles on marriage survival, not just chivalry.

Question from Mr. H (real name is undisclosed):

Dear GC and its distinguished members, 

Thank you for educating our men on the values of being a gentleman, from chivalry to culture to elegance - which forms the foundation of a quality man. But I believe more can be done as I notice that your articles are inclined towards single than married men.

I think GC should have more articles about how both men and women can compromise and adapt with one another, especially in marriage. How looks should never be the factor for getting into a relationship, how men should be aware of a woman's behavior especially in time of crisis. 

Truth be told, I have been married three times. My last two marriage were all with beautiful women who I was blindly infatuated with over their good looks and body. I have learned my lesson...painfully twice!

From my experience, beautiful women can stand us during happy times, but tough times come, they can't adapt. They become hostile. That was what killed my last two marriages. They just can't settle for less. For example, when I said that I was tight for a particular month, she started to question me in an aggressive manner, or when I told them to minimize on spendings, they would mock me and insult me. 

One thing I have noticed, in modern times, they are not open to the idea of pregnancy. Both of my ex wife refuse to have babies as they claimed that they are afraid of their body being out of shape so they use a tactic to delay their pregnancies as a sign that they just refuse to be pregnant. I notice this is becoming a trend with beautiful women.

Another challenge is with their ever increasing food taste. Sometimes when I am tight, I go for affordable Mamak restaurant or food stall to eat...I would end up going alone. However, my ex-wives refused to join. They want to go to a fancy restaurant instead. On nafkah (financial obligation by the husband), they demand high expectation. If I gave less, expect world war II. Truth be told, my last ex wife, her monthly allowance is amounted to RM 5,000. If during certain times I gave her less than that, I will be yelled and mocked.

So the question is, who is the trouble maker here? 

My third and current marriage, I married someone who is normal and I can see the huge difference. She would greet me by the door and salam my hand, she would prepare meals for me without being told, she doesn't mind going mamak or some warung. I am married to her for 4 years now and we have a son because she wants to have children on her own. Best thing is, duit nafkah she wouldn't mind how much as long it doesn't pains me. She opened my eyes that beauty is all about inside. I know that a man generally desired beautiful woman, the prettier the better so everyone would praise the guy for having a beautiful girlfriend. Yes. That's male ego. I had that during my last two marriages. I bring them to meet people, people would go "Wow your wife is stunning....you are the man bro!".... yes that kind of attention made me feel respected but somewhere deep inside, I was in pain because of how demanding they were.

So again, I think articles on how men should be aware of the opposite sex before settling down is extremely important, what are the red flags of a woman before a man can readily propose. Money is always the issue so always discuss about monetary like nafkah, who would pay the bills, what happens if we men lose our job, what would their reaction be? hear their response before you decide to walk that aisle. This is very important because anything can happen to our jobs. Do your calculation, if you can't afford this woman, let her go. Don't force it just because she is hot and you can never get a body like her.  I know many beautiful women would tell the man to find money himself because it is their responsibility as a man. That is not the answer we seek. What is their expectation on credit card. Do they expect a supplementary card? who is going to pay? how are they going to use this card? Then talk about houses. Women nowadays they have their own criteria for a house e.g. location, type of house. etc. Truth be told, this is not like the last time where we men can lead and decide where we want to live. Now it's also about them. Don't be surprise there are women who don't even want a high rise like my first ex wife. She wanted a house in Desa Sri Hartamas that is close to her friends which I couldn't afford. Tried to please her by staying at my apartment in Cheras and we only lasted a year because she couldn't adapt with the location but I loved it because it was near to my work area. I thought with time, she would adjust and adapt but I was wrong. She was firm with her decision about staying in Desa Sri Hartamas so she can be closer to her friends and we had fights on that every month. So guys, please plan carefully before you marry someone or you will be in deep trouble.

Divorce rates in Malaysia is high at a worrying rate which is why it is time for someone to bring awareness about this. It's no longer about men dressing up well, or being chivalrous, that comes with the package already but it is about knowing who you would spend your life with and finding their expectations and standards.


Answer by The Gentleman:

Hey there, Mr. H!

Thanks for the email! It's a really interesting perspective on marriage, and one that a lot of guys can probably relate to.

You're absolutely right that articles focused solely on men being gentlemen might not address the full picture of a happy marriage. Articles that explore how couples can compromise, navigate challenges together, and build a strong foundation would be a valuable addition. After all, a successful marriage is a team effort, right?

I hear you loud and clear about the difficulties you faced in your previous marriages. It sounds like communication and aligning expectations were a major hurdle. Maybe an article on "What Both Partners Need in a Healthy Marriage" could be a good starting point. This way, the focus wouldn't just be on men being chivalrous, but also on open communication and finding someone who shares your values and life goals.

Your point about discussing finances before marriage is spot-on. Talking openly about money, nafkah, who pays the bills, and even how you'd handle job loss can definitely prevent a lot of arguments down the line. It's about being practical and ensuring you're financially compatible before making a big commitment.

It's fantastic that you found happiness with your current wife! It sounds like you guys have open communication and are on the same page about what matters in your relationship. Your story is a great reminder that true compatibility goes beyond physical attraction.

Thanks again for sharing your experiences, GC. I'm sure your insights will be valuable to a lot of guys who are looking to build strong, lasting relationships.

Talking Money with Your Wife: Taming Financial Troubles Together

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