Our marriage to our spouse is the most important relationship we will ever enter into, despite its importance though, most of us are extremely unprepared for marriage and have no idea what it takes to make it last. As a result, divorce in our society is at an all-time high, and an increasing number of couples are choosing not to get married. Below are tips for both husbands and wives that I follow in my own marriage and also find myself giving to couples over and over.
Tips for him:
- Your wife desires an emotional connection with you through meaningful conversation, the same way you desire physical a connection with her. If you make love to her mind, her body will follow.
- Your wife needs to feel emotionally connected to you in order to desire sexual intimacy with you and truly enjoy it. (see tip #1 again)
- It’s not the 1950s anymore. Your wife works a full time job just like you do. Get off the couch and help with the children and chores around the house. Doing so will not only make her happy, she will have more time to spend with you.
- Instead of getting upset because your wife is not in the mood for sex. Try stepping up to the plate and working to get her in the mood.
- Your wife and children are MORE important than your career and should never take a back seat to it.
- Listen to what your wife says and DON’T try to fix her problems unless she specifically asks you to. While a man talks to friends about problems hoping for tips on how to deal with it, women usually only share their problems to get emotional support, not a fix for the problem.
- Most wives are not impressed by the big things we do to show our love for them once a month or so when that’s all we ever do, instead, it’s the little things we as husbands do on a daily basis that better demonstrates our love for them.
- Want to spend quality time with your wife? Arrange it yourself. Call a babysitter and make plans for an evening out with her on your own. No reason why she has to be the one to arrange childcare.
- Find ways to say “I love you” that don’t involve sex.
Tips for her:
- For men, sex is more than a physical act, it’s a core need and how they connect emotionally, and experience deeper levels of intimacy.
- Your husband thinks about sex up to 30 times a day, to your 1-2 times a day. So yes, it is on his mind a lot. This is normal.
- God, Husband, Children…..always in that order. Your kids come after your husband, not before. Your marriage needs to be number one. Your spouse was there before the kids and will be there after the kids move out. Work on that relationship first.
- Your husband’s greatest need in this world is to be respected, and the person he desires that respect from the most is his wife. Ignoring this and constantly controlling or criticizing him will cause him to feel dis-respected and shut down. A respected husband is a happy husband.
- A good man is driven to provide a good life for his family even if it kills him. It’s the reason they work ungodly hours and often seem to put career ahead of family.
- Never say the “D Word”. If you’re gonna say it, you better mean it. Plain and simple, threatening divorce is not fighting fair and it looses its meaning when you say it every time you get in a fight.
- Don’t talk bad about your husband or vent about your marital problems to your family or girlfriends. If you’re having marital issues that need resolved, enlist the help of a pastor, counselor, or relationship coach who is knowledgeable and will be impartial.
Tips for him & her:
- Learn his love language. Everyone has a love language. The way you perceive love is often different from the way your spouse perceives love. Learn more about the Five Love Languages HERE.
- Give without expecting anything in return. If you desire a happy marriage you must be willing to give without keeping tabs on who gave what or whose turn it is to go the extra mile. When you give without expectation you supercharge your marriage and you will get back much more than you gave.
- FORGIVE over and over again. Let’s face it, we all make some pretty stupid mistakes that have us seeking forgiveness from our spouse on a near daily basis. Learn from the past and LET IT GO. Your spouse deserves to be free from the past and so do you. It’s God’s job to judge them, not yours. The faster you forgive the more fully love will flow.
- Never criticize. Build your spouse up for the things they do right rather than tearing them down for the things that they do wrong.
- Ask for what you want. Your spouse is NOT a mind-reader. No matter how long you’ve lived together, they still won’t always know what you want.
- Every night, no matter how tough it is, pray together. Prayer is one of the most powerful things you can do for your marriage.
- Remember that marriage is less about marrying the right person and more about becoming the right person. Be the spouse you’d want to be married to yourself.