I want to be held. Believe me, I do, but I need more than a pair of heavy arms wrapped around me, tying me down when my soul is soaring.
I want to be swept off my feet, because if I desired to hold you I would want to sweep you off your feet, too. I would want to unbalance you so much so that you would fall right into my arms.
I would be there to catch you; I planned it that way.
I want to be held, because I grew up reading Jane Austen’s every word, and to be approached and enchanted like that shouldn’t be a thing so antiquated that you only read it in novels now. Modern romance as conducted through swipes, snaps and shorthand messages leaves me hungry for that “meaning” we all yearn for.
I’m starving, and emoticons just don’t feed me.
Meaningless entanglements of the limbs don’t feed me either; I need more than the vague pretense of a hold. Because nothing’s colder than an empty hold.
To hold my body, you have to hold my mind first.
Before we’ve met, hold me with your gaze. Hold me there for a few seconds, hold my breath, just breathe me in—lock eyes with me for one more moment—and just like that, compel me closer to you.
When we meet, address me in a manner that shows your force of character. Approach me with grace, and respect that I have a name. Don’t jump the gun on “baby” talk; conversely, don’t call me your “buddy,” either. Premature anything is less-than-desirable, and it’s nice to be differentiated from being “one of the guys.”
If we meet again, please find greetings other than “Yoooo.” (I’ve yet to encounter a successful man who addresses a lady like this.) And if you go for nicknames, show intellect and imagination, because wooing someone is an art.
When we hold conversations, tell me what you love. Tell me about your day, your world, your passions, your dreams—I’m all for that. Better yet, teach me what I don’t know. If you have me locked in a conversation with you, green lights, I want to know. There’s nothing more sexy than a man in focus. Nothing more attractive than seeing someone light up in their element. “A man’s worth is no greater than his ambitions.” Words of gold from Marcus Aurelius. So show me.
I will remember you for what lights you up, and how you light up and how warm that felt. So talk to me, and hold me with the tongue you speak. We can skip the part about the crazy exes, the bad friends and the nightmare parents or bosses from hell, because speaking poorly of others will reflect poorly on you. Refrain from that descent. Not now, not yet.
If you’re still holding me by now, ask me for what I like. Everyone has tastes and preferences; you don’t know if you don’t ask. Hold me with your questions, your intrigue. Figure me out, or at least attempt to, because the arrogance to assume you know what’s best will just make me want to skip the rest and go home alone.
Men who take charge are sexy, but men whose egos run the show are chauvinists in disguise. Real men never neglect to ask. Assume nothing.
And because who doesn’t have 99 problems? If I share mine, please offer tangible solutions. A single, pitiful expression of “That sucksss…” is not something I need to reacquaint with. Believe me, with first-hand experience I know better than you can imagine. Yes, that sucks, so please don’t make it worse; offer real solutions.
Be the man that I so need in moments when I most need to be held. Hold me together with your strength, your ability to figure things out, your balance, your solutions, because some days I’m a crazy hot mess, a train-wreck or a damsel in distress.
Hold me by grounding me.
If you still want to hold me—and really want to hold me more—don’t kidnap me away from what I love to do. Hold me, but don’t hi-jack me. Don’t tell me that I need a break, because I run on what I do.
Hold me with sincerity. Genuine sincerity trumps slick lines any day. I’m of the creed that’s immune to sugarcoated sweet-talk.
Lastly, if we ever get to promises, hold your promises, because a man is only as good as his words.
And if you’re still holding me, then now is when you lay your hands on me, and sink your teeth in me and let me teach you how it feels to be held like this.
Author: Xiren Wang
Editor: Toby Israel