Breaking stereotypes, men speak of women, romance |

Breaking stereotypes, men speak of women, romance

Monday is Valentine’s Day, a time tailored for women when men recognize and celebrate the nurturing that comes natural to most women every day of the year.

Guys typically shower women with attention, appreciation and affection through gifts of flowers, chocolate or dinner at a nice restaurant.

The Tahoe Daily Tribune investigated what some men are indeed thinking about the special day.

“Girls are all about Valentine’s Day. Girls want to be loved,” said Mike Wahlstrom, 21, of South Lake Tahoe. “It’s a day for them to feel – to get attention, sort of.”

Wahlstrom is single now, but when he has a girlfriend he makes time for her on Valentine’s Day.

“If you have a girlfriend, you go ‘OK, I’ve got to spend the day with her.’ You take her out, get her flowers and try to make it a good day,” he said.

For guys without girlfriends, Valentine’s Day may mean less of a hit on the pocketbook, but it can also mean an unpleasant 24 hours.

“It’s a double-sided thing,” said Shawn Swinger, 20, of South Lake Tahoe. “If you have a girlfriend, it can be a really good thing. If you don’t, it reminds you that you’re lonely.”

When a guy is attached, he’s likely the one who ends up doing the most, said Swinger, a college student.

“A lot of the time the guy has to do a lot of work, like make reservations, pay for the dinner, chocolate and roses,” he said.

Does the man want anything in return?

“I guess he just expects affection,” Swinger said.

Wahlstrom said he “sort of” expects something in return, but it “depends on how much you do” for the girl.

Valentine’s Day, apparently for some, can lose its spice as time rolls by. People get married, schedules and budgets get tighter and before couples know it, the day becomes less spontaneous.

Josh Welch, 30, of South Lake Tahoe, is a full-time student, full-time waiter, has two children and is engaged. Welch is up to the Valentine’s Day tradition.

“She told me that she wanted chocolate and that she didn’t want me to spend any extra money,” Welch said. “Pretty much she said get me this and I’ll be happy. So I got off easy.”

Tom Finn, 60, of South Lake Tahoe, sees Valentine’s Day as a day that is just as much for him as it is for wife of 32 years.

“I think it’s an equal holiday,” he said. “A good day to show appreciation for what you have. Usually she gets me my fishing license for the year. I take my wife to the hunting club I belong to and she gets to go hunting with me. And we always go out to dinner and I get her a piece of jewelry, too.”

How to score points with a woman …

1. Upon returning home find her first before doing anything else and give her a hug.

2. Ask her specific questions about the day that indicate an awareness of what she was planning to do (How did your appointment with the doctor go?)

3. Practice listening and asking questions.

4. Resist the temptation to solve her problems, empathize instead.

5. Give her 20 minutes of unsolicited quality attention.

How to score points with a man …

1. If he makes a mistake she shouldn’t say “I told you so.”

2. If he disappoints her, she shouldn’t punish him.

3. If he becomes lost while driving a woman shouldn’t make a big deal out of it. Instead, she should look for the good in the situation and, for example, say: “We would never have seen this beautiful sunset if we had taken the most direct route.”

4. He forgets to pick something up, a woman should say: “It’s OK. Would you do it next time you are out?”

– From the book “Men Are From Mars, Women Are from Venus.”

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