Gone are the days of women bending the knee to a man's every need. One of the results of empowering women is that they become focused on reaching their goals, and often their partners become insecure.
This is not the direct result of women being given the leadership role, but due to the decline of a intimacy found in their relationships.
We find ourselves with confused roles and pay "empowerment tax" when we can't break through communication barriers with our partners.
This week's question comes from Dorothy in Bryanston: “My partner drives me crazy with his constant innuendos. Why do I not hold him at night? Why have we not been intimate for three days? The evenings are hot and I am focussed on reaching my targets at work. I speak to men all day having to impress them. The last thing I want is an insecure husband.
"What can I do? Because, if he keeps it up he will drive me away. I do not want another failed marriage.”
The reality with so many women in leadership positions is that they become focused on their careers. Depending on where you are in your life stage, a woman’s libido wanes with age. It becomes worse when her career involves travelling and/or her partner needs his own life independent of hers when she is away.
With reversed roles and empowerment programmes women are asked to perform better and to prove themselves.
Her energy gets redirected away from putting her relationship first because she often also accepts her new role as the key breadwinner.
Dorothy, can I presume here that you are the key earner and that you take your responsibility very seriously? If your answer is yes, this is my response to your question:
Being superman is a myth. You can still love powerful sex, but your multitasking skills do not extend to splitting your energy in half and expecting to perform 100 percent in two different life areas at the same time.
Where your focus goes is where you will apply your energy, either fully or half-heartedly. When women are pushed into leading careers where they are focussed and directive, it takes from them their ability to put their man’s emotional needs first before their own. Their capacity to nurture is taken when they live in their masculine at work.
This is the real issue with role reversals inside the relationship space.
Modern relationships mean that when women take on masculine roles, their partners’ expectations also need to be adjusted. This is where the lines becomes blurry.
What are you actually agreeing to when you become the leading partner? Does it count for making the first move with intimacy as well? Who now has the final say with family decisions? Who is the nurturer and who is the leader?
The reality is that a needy partner who cannot be objective finds himself insecure and in need of clarity about what to expect and what not to expect.
Roles need to be clarified in all areas of the relationship.
The mind is a very powerful thing and if your partner, (who now is pushed into taking on the role of a nurturer) cannot ask for his needs to be put first, then will he be able to adjust?
I believe the above question is the key. Make your mind up about what you really want. Does your relationship take first or second place? Then adjust either your career or your relationship bedroom antics (with or without compromises).
Do it out loud with your partner and when you discuss this transparently you empower him to help you both create clearer expectations of each other.
* Adelé Green is a Transformation Specialist Coach and author of Can You See Me Naked: Grow in a Conscious Relationship. She provides answers when posted on www.adele-green.com/askadele/ or you can chat to her online. Also listen to #360Brunch on mix93.fm on Sundays.