Are you frustrated with your husband?

Are you struggling in your marriage?

Do you wonder what happened to the couple that you used to be?

Do you love your husband but sometimes not like him very much?

Are you tired of being sad and lonely?

Photo credit: Creative Commons (sheeerin)

I was all of those things a few years ago. I was tired, and frustrated, and wasn’t sure this marriage was a good idea anymore. I had no idea how we’d gotten there. Nothing major had happened. We were still together. We just weren’t happy. But we were too afraid to admit it and say it out loud.

Our kids were younger and demanded attention. We both had full-time jobs that were demanding. We had a mortgage, and a car payment, and bills and debt and enough stress to last us a lifetime. And we used all of those things to spiral us into a comfortable, but unhappy place.

My husband was crying out for my attention and my respect. I heard him, but I really didn’t want to hear it. I had enough on my plate. I couldn’t imagine the idea of trying to lift him up and let him know he was needed. He was a confident, strong person. He should be able to figure that out himself. Heck, he should know it already!

I had no idea that my reluctance to help validate and support him was making him feel so isolated and unneeded. Again, he would tell me that he felt like he wasn’t needed, but it was usually in the middle of an argument, and honestly, I thought he was being childish.

I didn’t fully understand that men need respect just like women need to feel loved. It’s what helps them keep going every day. It fuels them, just like love and affection fuels most women.

Now what?

The great news is that these are simple changes that can have huge implications. I’ve spoken with multiple women lately who have said something really nice and affirming about their husbands to me, but they then follow it up with, “But I would never tell him that. I don’t want his head to get any bigger.”

I know I have thought or said this at one time in my life as well. But now I know what a difference it can make when you do! I always encourage these women to tell their husbands!

When a man gets appreciation and respect from his wife , it is amazing what that does to him.

He walks taller.

His mood lightens.

He feels good!

I was amazed at the difference these things have made in our marriage. We have learned to recognize the triggers, and to be able to express what we feel when the other does something that doesn’t make us feel good. We have also learned to affirm each other and pay attention to each other. Of  course, it has to be sincere to be effective.

This is something that you can do today! It doesn’t cost money, and it’s not a huge time commitment.

But it can have a significant impact. It is worth it!

Think about something you really love about your husband.  It can be simple. It could be that you love how he does the laundry without being asked. Or that you appreciate how he provides for your family. It could be how he plays with the kids when he gets home and spends time with them. Or how you love what a great Dad he is.

Everyone can find something that they love or appreciate and then share with their spouse. I guarantee that if you’ve been in a rut  and not expressing these kinds of things, he will be surprised. He may not show it right away, but it will make a difference. Slowly but surely, you will see things changing.

It’s hard to stay mad and unhappy when you’re finding ways to honor and respect each other. Click here to Tweet!

This is not the answer to everything, of course. But it’s usually a really great start.

How do you show respect to your husband? Husbands, do you agree with this? I’d love to hear your thoughts.