What do women really want their husbands to know? It’s not as complicated as it seems! Have you noticed that all women seem to get other women? They understand that there are certain things a man can do to make him a great husband and certain things he can do to make him an alright or horrible husband. But because men and women tend to have different ways of expressing love and relating, it can all seem complicated to a man who doesn’t get what women want.
The trick is to put yourself in your spouse’s shoes and see love from her angle, not yours. When you are too focused on how YOU want to receive love and feel appreciated, you can’t make the distinction that she wants to receive love and feel appreciated in different ways. It doesn’t make your way or her way any more right or better, it just makes it different.
So, understanding the differences is crucial. Do you want to really learn how to be a better husband? Following are 10 tips that will change your marriage for the better.
1. Pay Attention
Your wife wants to be heard. She wants you to really understand why she is saying what she is saying, and if you can’t, to at least try to understand what she is saying.
A lot of men make jokes that women talk too much. Do you ever wonder why? It’s because women talk to sort through things in their mind. They don’t hold it all in. They can’t. They need to express how they feel in order to feel better and they want you to sympathize with them as they do. That way they can feel a sense of support from the man who matters most to them.
If you ever watch a woman talking to a woman, you will see her listening, paying attention to the words, understanding what she is saying, and sympathizing with her. If you can do that, you can become a rock star in your wife’s world.
2. Learn To Read Body Language (Or Ask Her To Be Clearer)
Women are very empathetic and can catch hints through body language much better than men can, but that doesn’t stop them from expecting their husband’s to catch their hints. They will say they are fine, but give a slightly sad look or act in a mad manner, which clearly states that they are not fine.
So you have two options. Either learn to read her body language and catch on to what she really means, or ask her to be clearer. Tell her that you just can’t decipher what she is trying to say to you, but you want to, and the only way you can really know is if she is open and honest with you and doesn’t try to make you guess.
That kind of direct honesty should be enough to help her feel better about your inability to read her cues. And, even though it makes her very uncomfortable, she will start to be more direct with you so that you can understand what she is really feeling.
However, you are going to have to let her be open and honest with you from that point forward or she will revert back to her natural tendency. Don’t make it seem like you don’t really care. Don’t put her off until you are done watching the game. Make sure you listen to her when she needs you to listen.
3. Don’t Reject Her Feelings – Ever
Have you ever told a woman that she was overreacting or that she was being silly? If you have, you pissed her off and hurt her feelings. I guarantee it.
Her feelings are real and valid, just like yours are. She expresses her feelings to you because you are someone she feels safe with. She can’t express all of her real emotions with her coworkers, mother, or even friend. You are the one person she’s allowed to be completely and totally open with – until you make her feel bad for opening up to you.
Telling her that she is being stupid or silly is detrimental to your relationship. In her mind, you are telling her that she doesn’t know how to handle her emotions and she should just suck it up because you don’t care.
And, when you do that, she doesn’t just get rid of her natural tendency to be emotional, instead, she will close herself off around you so that she doesn’t have to be put down again, and then she will start to feel disconnected from you. That’s your ticket to divorce down the line. If your wife doesn’t feel connected to you, then she will start to gravitate away from you.
4. Remember Things That Are Important To Her
As a man, it is not your ‘right’ to forget things. You have a brain, and even though her memory may be more focused on things like birthdays, anniversaries and other celebrations than yours is, that doesn’t mean that you can’t add events to your calendar or notifications. There are ways to remember what is important to her!
Moreover, writing down things that she finds meaningful can help you surprise her with meaningful things. For instance, if she talks about how much she loves a certain type of food, you can write that down on your personal calendar and use it to make her a nice surprise supper in the future.
Basically, showing her that you care enough to remember the things that she cares about is an easy trick on how to become a better husband. It just requires your brain to connect the dots: wife likes – take notes – surprise her by remembering.
5. Protect Her
Women don’t need protection in most cases, but that doesn’t mean your wife won’t like it if you do protect her. All women are instinctively attracted to a man who can stand up for them and be their protector. Even if they don’t need it, the gesture is nice, and it is a very masculine quality that women find attractive.
You don’t have to save her from a bad guy. You just have to keep her from harm or injury. So, instead of letting her carry the heavy box, you do it to. Instead of letting her go first into a scary house, you do it. Don’t make her feel as though she has to protect you, and you will find that the feminine and masculine balance stays intact and you will both feel better about each other.
6. Do What You Need To Do To Make Her Feel Equal
This is a big one! If you ask her what’s for dinner after she gets home from a long day of work, you will piss her off. If you let your wife do all of the cleaning and cooking while you sit and watch TV, she is likely getting more annoyed. Then, if you are supposed to take out the garbage, but don’t, she is acutely aware of that fact and will mention it to you.
At that point, she will feel like she has to nag or, in other terms, be your mother. If you make your wife nag at you, she will dislike you more. It’s annoying to have to urge someone to do what they need to do all the time, and when she starts to view you like a child, you become less of a husband. That’s not attractive to any woman!
Be a grown up. Be her husband. Be her equal. Do what you need to do in the house and don’t make her take on more than you. You are a team, and if you want a maid, you should get a maid.
Are you wondering why can’t she just wait until you are ready to do something, and why she has to nag in the first place? The biggest reason is probably because you have proven that if she doesn’t nag you, then you won’t do it. The second reason is because she wants to get it done. Women generally like things to be taken care of before they sit down and rest, and the longer you make her work to take care of everything, the more annoyed she gets and feels like she has to beg you to help her.
7. Respond In Complete Sentences
Women need to hear how you feel in order to feel like they understand where you are coming from. This doesn’t mean you have to pour your heart out, but it does mean you need to articulate how you feel or what you think with more than a yes or a no.
Why do this? Think of it this way: If you decide not to respond in complete sentences, then she will keep bugging you and bugging you to find out what you are thinking. That will annoy her and it will annoy you, and that will affect your relationship negatively. Just answer her fully the first time, make sure she’s clear on your meaning, and then you are done!
8. Show Appreciation
Women do things for other people. It’s in their nature. In other words, she often does things with you in mind. She may clean with you in mind. She may buy something with you in mind. She may say something nice that she thinks will make you feel good. She will do things for you, and if you never say anything, then she will feel unappreciated. Even if you notice and show her your gratitude through your body language, you should still verbally let her know that you appreciate her so that she can really feel it.
9. Be Honest
A lot of husbands hide things that they think will upset their wife. They think that she will overreact or make them feel bad for what they did. But, if you hide things from your wife, you are signing the papers for a divorce in your future. If she finds out you lied, then she will lose a little bit of trust in you. Once that happens, trust becomes a serious issue in the relationship and she will have doubts about other things as well. The longer that goes on, the more likely you are to have an unhappy and distrustful wife, which will lead to all kinds of problems in the marriage and eventually a divorce.
I knew one guy who used to hide his beer in the back of the toilet. He was so dishonest with his wife that he would wait until she went out and then go grab a beer. The thing is that she wouldn’t have cared. Yes, she may have rolled her eyes once in a while, but deep down it really didn’t bother her that he enjoyed drinking beer. (I know because I lived with them for a while.) Once he got comfortable hiding the beer, though, he did all kinds of other ridiculous things that he didn’t need to do. That dishonesty made her into one of the most distrustful wives I’ve ever met, and they were divorced not long after.
A better way to handle your fears is to talk to your wife! Let her know that you are scared of her judging you or overreacting or whatever, and let her know that you would like to openly discuss things with her so that you don’t have to hide anything. If you sit down and have a mature conversation, and let her know exactly where you are coming from, you will find that she will be willing to adjust her behavior so that you can feel more comfortable being honest.
10. Learn To Compromise
While you have her at the table talking about your desire to be honest, discuss other issues that are arising in the marriage too. Let her point out issues she is having, point out issues you are having, listen to each other, and then compromise to find solutions that make you both happy. If you take the initiative to start an open conversation like this, you are taking the advice on how to be a better husband to a whole new level, because you are getting it straight from her!
Your wife may be different than your buddy’s wife. She may have different needs and desires, and if you don’t sit down and talk to her openly about her issues and wants, then you will never know them. Take at least an hour every week to sit down with your wife and discuss your marriage. It will be uncomfortable sometimes, but it will help you maintain the best marriage you could possibly have.