28 Kislev 5782 / Thursday, December 02, 2021 | Torah Reading: Mikeitz
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The Princess and the Caveman    

The Princess and the Caveman

Marriage is the perfect setup to teach a man how to put the needs of his wife and his family before his own needs. It’s a man’s main mission in life...


Dear Racheli,


I caught my wife emailing back and forth with a man that she’s been friendly with since they were kids. He is flirting with her and calling her romantic nicknames. I’ve told her to stop being in contact with him, but she refuses to and says it’s all innocent. I don’t know what to do…




Hey George!


Did you know that women are masters of denial? In her mind, it may be innocent, but I can almost guarantee you that it’s because she is in complete denial of the reality. If she would let herself realize that she is crossing the boundary of the sanctity of her marriage by flirting with another man, then she would (most likely, probably, hopefully) stop. She is also in denial because many women refuse to understand that men see them differently than they see themselves.


This has nothing to do with my answer, but I just have to give an example for you lovely ladies out there. For example, a woman is trying on a cute and very tight mini-dress. She’s in the fitting room, turning this way and that, checking herself out from all angles, worrying if her backside looks too big, or if her thighs are too fat, or whatever. She doesn’t have the faintest idea (because she doesn’t really want to) that a man who sees her in that mini-dress is not going to complain about how big her backside is! His ape radar will turn on, and all he will think to himself is: “Foxy woman. Hoo Haa Haa!” while beating his hairy chest.


George, I hate to break it to you, but your wife’s flirting isn’t for no reason. It’s actually a sign that things are not right in your marriage. And, guess what, George! It’s all your fault! Okay, so it may not be all your fault. Let’s just round it out to 99.3% your fault.


But don’t be mad at me! Rav Shalom Arush, in his bestselling marital guide, The Garden of Peace, puts the blame on the husband! You see, marriage is really more for the man than the woman. By nature, women are more giving and nurturing, and they tend to put themselves last. On the other hand, men are more selfish, self-centered, egotistical, prideful, and tend to put themselves on a pedestal. That’s why a man is supposed to get married: so he is forced to focus on someone else’s needs for a change. Let’s review that again, George. Marriage is the perfect setup to teach a man how to put the needs of his wife and his family before his own. It’s a man’s main mission in life, and all of your rationalization around it isn’t going to change that fact.


Now, if the husband doesn’t get it because he’s too thick-headed, then problems start to come up. The wife starts to nag. Then she starts to scream. Then she may start to hit. Next thing you know, she’s throwing sharp knives and teflon-coated frying pans at your head. If it’s gone this far, I suggest seeking professional help asap. If your skull is still relatively undamaged, there may be hope for you yet.


In reality, her behavior is a type of self-defense mechanism. Your wife can’t allow herself to feel the pain of being married to a man who doesn’t treat her right. She’s not only in denial of crossing the line with another man, but she’s also in denial of how poorly you’ve been treating her.


You see, George, the real reason she is flirting with another man is because you’re not giving her the three A’s: Attention, Affection, and Appreciation. Let’s say it again: Attention, Affection, and Appreciation. Did you get that? Good! Figure out how to make it your screensaver on your smartphone.


George, I bet that you’re not aware of the historical root of the word, “man.” It turns out that “man” is actually short for “caveman.” As our wild monkey brains randomly evolved, we accidentally began to achieve incredibly complex, higher thinking capabilities. However, for some unexplainable reason, the male monkey species still retains the vestigial primal man-brain. This primal brain is responsible for man’s animalistic tendencies and the inability to put the toilet seat down. Maybe it’s because he subconsciously thinks he still lives in the jungle, where there are no toilets.


Considering your inherent genetic shortcomings, I’ll break it down for you in caveman terms.


First A: Attention. Take your wife out for a walk and/or a nice dinner. Look at her when you talk to her, and pretend to be interested in what she has to say to you.


Second A: Affection. Tell her how much you love her and how beautiful she is to you. Hold her hand. Give her a hug and kiss at least once a day, monthly time and weather permitting. Sit with her on the couch and just hang out together.


Third A: Appreciation. Tell her how grateful you are for everything she does for you (and your children, if you have any.) Tell her you genuinely appreciate her superhuman efforts to run the house and take care of your family’s needs, even though you rarely (never?) mention it. Here’s one of my favorites: tell her you, as a man, could never do what she can do. She’s light years ahead of you, and you’re so grateful that Hashem gave you such a wonderful life partner in her. And for God’s sake, do the dishes once in a while!!


I am certain that if you apply the three A’s in your marriage, she’ll drop that other guy like last season’s espadrilles, and you will both live happily ever after, just like The Princess and the Caveman. Seriously, I smell a new Disney blockbuster...


Warmest Blessings,





* * *

Feel free to send Racheli your questions, particularly in the areas of marriage, dating, child-rearing and women's role; write her at racheli@breslev.co.il

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