Training a woman is not that different from training a man (see video on Training a Man). Many of the same rules apply. The main difference is that men often try to train women, or get what they want, by being dominating and controlling. This often puts a woman into a victim role (where she's afraid to speak up) or a rebellious stance (which creates a power struggle). Either way, the relationship usually ends badly. Men are also more likely to pull away before they tell a woman what they want. They often get resentful and stop communicating to her, sometimes to teach her a lesson. This will not work in the long run.
For instance, a man is more likely to insist on paying for dinners (controlling), then resent a woman because she isn't contributing, eventually pulling way. In training a woman to contribute, a man needs to start at the beginning (or after a couple of dates at the most) and suggest she contribute in some way, or ask, "How should we handle this, do you want to split the tab or do you want to get it next time?"
Don't treat her like a Princess and then get mad because she acts like one. My Denver client Sam learned this the hard way. When he met his future bride, he began to wine and dine her and take all over the world on trips. He ignored much of her bad behavior and severe mood swings, and rushed to the altar in only a few months. After they were married, she continued her bad behavior of going out with her friends and often not coming home until the next morning. He let her know he didn't like it, but he had already trained her that she could do no wrong in his eyes, so she kept doing it. All he knew to do at this point was pull back his affection. In marriage counseling, she truly believed that the demise of the marriage was his fault for no longer being affectionate and had nothing to do with her bad behavior. After all, he hadn't complained before. He now knows, since their divorce, that he needed to speak up when they were dating.
Much like training a child or a dog, you must start early on training a woman, Don't let her get used to your generosity and attentiveness. Ask for something back so you are developing a "give and take" equal relationship right off the bat. As Sam learned, retraining a girlfriend is similar to retraining a dog or a child--very difficult, and with a person it can only be done if the person wants to change.
When a woman is behaving badly in your relationship, don't take it personally like she doesn't care enough. Don't chase after her, act demanding, or get jealous. In training a woman, simply communicate that this behavior is not okay with you, tell her what you want (leaving room for some negotiating), then pull away from her if her behavior doesn't change, making sure she knows why you are pulling away.
Comment from John, the viewer who asked the question about training a woman:
I really enjoyed your article, there are points I agree with and others that I don't. I understand that Operant Conditioning needs to happen in order to modify/change someone's behavior. It doesn't work with women now days however, since they say they "don't need a man" and in my opinion are becoming more narcissistic, and ego driven.
Any comments back for John?
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