I only mention this because there is so much discussion regarding manipulation. But think about manipulation. Inherent within it is often the assumption of weakness, or some power that needs to be gained. In marriage, it often implies someone looking up to the person who holds the power, or in the converse state, someone with tremendous power who is sucking the life out of the weaker one. Self respect and integrity should eliminate the fear of manipulation, or being a doormat.
The word I bolded, in my opinion, is where some take issue with these discussions. It is seen in terms of who has, or is exerting influence and power ... particularly if framed from the point of view of the male influencing power over the woman. Sawney Beane said as much with the benevolent despotism analogy.
If you were to ask a woman if she respects, values, and trusts the judgment of her husband, generally, she will feel inclined to say, yes.
If you were to ask a woman, if her husband leads the relationship and she is comfortable following his lead, you are likely to get a different response.
To me, context is everything. Those sentences above infer the same thing. One is implicit. The other is explicit. One is likely to elicit positive emotions and a positive response. The other is going to send up red flags, defensiveness and prompt questions of; "What do you mean?" The second question infers power and weakness, and that makes folks uncomfortable.
I've seen it. Actually saw it this past weekend when staying with my brother and his partner in CA. I pay attention where I didn't before. I don't think that I'm smarter or wiser, or know things that others don't. I've done my due diligence and put into practice what I have learned. I certainly don't feel like I have anything to prove. Not to anyone other than myself.
Excellent summary, Halien.