How do men spell love? R-E-S-P-E-C-T. That, according to Emerson Eggerichs, is the key difference between husbands and wives. Women thrive on loving relationships while men thrive on respectful relationships. Eggerichs has created an entire movement based on Ephesians 5.33 where Paul writes, “Each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” There it is: love and respect.
is a pair of charts. One identifies the “Crazy Cycle” and the other the “Energizing Cycle.” Pretty simple and straight-forward – and they make sense, too.
Eggerichs attempts to simplify the basic differences between men and women by suggesting that women wear pink glasses and use pink hearing aids while men wear blue glasses and use blue hearing aids. Over generalization? Sure, but it mostly works as another take on the familiar “men and women are hard-wired differently” mantra.
The premise is that women were created with a natural tendency to give and receive love while men were created to give and receive respect. When each relies on their default setting the other is left feeling ignored and unappreciated. The wife feels unloved and withholds respect for her husband. The husband, feeling disrespected, withholds love. This gives power to the Crazy Cycle. The solution is simple, at least in theory: Men need to show wives love while women need to show husbands respect. Eggerichs does a good job giving plenty of examples of how husbands and wives can learn to do this better which would lead to the Energizing Cycle.
“Love & Respect” isn’t the final word on marriage but its a good one – one that is worth reading and paying attention to.