How to Really Love Your Husband

I met him when I was 18 on my very first day of college. We attended a small private Bible School and I was the introvert in the room. He drew me out.

I was immediately attracted to his personality. And then his muscular tan legs. He was fun and social-everything I wasn’t.

We instantly became friends. It was three years before we became more than friends, but there was always a strong undercurrent in our relationship.

Then one day, he graduated from college and left for graduate school, I visited him.

We kissed.

[ELECTRICITY]

We married 87 days later.

I love my husband deeply. I loved him through a very dark period in our marriage. I’ve watched him fight the battle of his life and win. But we’re human. Selfishness creeps in and daily, we must choose love.

The book that made me a better wife: For Women Only, offers startling statistics about our husbands:

1000 men were asked to rate what was MOST important to them-what they really needed the most from their wives, basically, how they felt most loved, the results with #1 being the most important need:

5. I need her to understand my burden to provide/how draining my job is.

4. I need more sex.

3. I need more respect, in public and private.

2. I wish she’d make more of an effort to take care of herself.

And the number one need in the survey (or way we can really love our husbands) ….

1. I want her to know how much I love her.

He loves you. He may not show it the way you want or even need. But at his core, despite poor communication skills or your doubt–he loves you.

And that’s how we can really love our husbands, by accepting and believing in their love for us.

Ten tangible things you can do to really love him:

  1. Kiss him 5 seconds longer than normal.
  2. Pray for him.
  3. Get dressed everyday.
  4. Ask him about his work; listen to what he says.
  5. Let him pick the movie.
  6. Wear that tiny lacy thing in the back of your drawer.
  7. Tell him you respect him-when he least expects it.
  8. Randomly ask him a question about the bills or dinner or anything, naked.
  9. Thank him for leading your family (even if he doesn’t do it like you would).
  10. Don’t criticize him in front anyone-including your children.

How do you really love your husband?

Comments

  1. 3

    Jennifer says

    Well, thank you for that swift kick in the backside. I needed to read that tonight. Once again I’ve directed my load of aggravation at the man I love. He didn’t deserve it. Off to say I’m sorry. Naked?

  2. 4

    says

    I love that book, it is fantastic.

    I love my husband with all of the above, and by thanking him regularly for working so hard to provide for us, especially seeing it is so hard at work ATM

  3. 6

    says

    Kristen, the day I met my husband i told my room mate I had met the man I would marry. She thought i was crazy and twenty seven years later she is still wrong. I loved your post and I also love that you were honest about loving through thick and thin. I have had to do that too and you are so right, you choose to love. All the best and what a cute photo of you two! Alex

  4. 7

    says

    Such a good book… About five years ago I bought my husband: “For Men Only,” and read the entire thing in the parking lot with kids bouncing around the car… went back in the store and bought “For Women Only” … I thought it wouldn’t apply to me!!! And how wrong I was … what a fabulous set of books – really marriage changing!!!

  5. 8

    says

    Thank you for this post Kristen! I add on to #10 about not criticizing, by complimenting him whether he is in “ear shot” or not and especially around our children.

  6. 9

    says

    Kristen, Thank you for this post. I need this reminder. Sometimes bitterness creeps in, and I want to shut it out and instead love my husband the way God wants me to (without expecting anything in return). By the way, the first picture of the two of you looks just like your KIDS!!!!! (your oldest daughter and your son!!!) Oh my word, as soon as I saw that, I saw how striking the resemblance is… You guys are so sweet, and a true inspiration. “He said she said” made an enormous impact on my life, you will never know… thank you.

    Blessings,
    Melanie

  7. 10

    says

    I really learned a lot from that book.

    I’m using Ann Voskamp’s 100 day calendar to challenge myself to leave my husband 100 love notes. They’re small…all starting with “I love you because…” and then I just finish the sentence. I’ve been doing this for a week now, and he called me this morning to tell me how much he’s enjoying getting the notes and how they inspire him. It’s a small thing that’s made a big difference!

  8. 14

    Meagan says

    About a month ago I would have really resented this post — or at least rolled my eyes and thought “she doesn’t know MY husband.”
    It sickens me to think of the attitude I’ve had towards my husband, not always intentionally, for most of my marriage. I’ve been a bitter, angry wife towards a problem I wasn’t willing to address — hiding behind bitterness so I wouldn’t have to acknowledge pain.
    Our relationship hit a breaking point about 3 weeks ago, and we dove headlong into the fight of our lives. Somehow that I don’t understand (the GRACE of GOD), acknowledging the pain made the way for forgiveness…which in turn gave the freedom to LOVE, and I will never be the same. WE will never be the same.
    We are only weeks into a long, hard journey that is probably going to bring more pain before it’s over, but I can honestly say that I can look at that list of 10 and think “I’ve been doing all of that!” And I am LOVING loving my husband.
    Thank you for your ministry!!

  9. 15

    Julie says

    Thank you so much for this! I had asked God this morning in prayer for a sign that allowing another young lady to live in our home for a time, while she becomes for financially stable, would not be a stumbling block or temptation in our marraige.
    I believe your words are the answer to that prayer. My husband does love me and I need to trust in that and let him know that I believe it. I just don’t trust the Evil One and what he can do in a situation.
    Thank you again for your words! God is so good and faithful if we are willing to be open to receiving the Holy Spirit and letting the Holy Spirit work through us.

  10. 17

    says

    That’s a really good book. The companion book, For Men Only, is good, too. Together, those two books summarize everything I learned in 21 credit hours focused on Marriage and Family Counseling. :)

    How do I love my husband? I make chili just the way he likes it. I am diligent to control our spending and honor the hard work he does each day. I tell him how much I love him at least once a day. I make sure our children tell him how much they love him (with words and deeds) every day. I only say no to sex when I’m really, really, really not in the mood (like physically ill or devastating news type of not in the mood.)

    He’s really great about showing his love to me, too. That makes it much easier to continue the cycle described in Ephesians 5. :)

  11. 18

    says

    Wonderful post! :) I’ve heard so much about this book from my friend (who teaches Bible study to young marrieds at our church) that I feel like I’ve read it — but I still haven’t! Need to actually read it for myself.

  12. 20

    says

    one of the things i do to show him (because he needs publicity when it comes to respect) is randomly posting on facebook how much i love him or something i’m proud of that he did.

  13. 21

    says

    I started reading that book last weekend, and wowwwwwww, what an eye opener. It’s such an easy book to read, in that it’s very well written and almost like sitting across from a good friend and listening to her wisdom, but it still has to be read slowly, savoring all the words, because they’re so radical from what I’ve always thought, that it takes some concentration to let them sink in.

    We’re also doing a marriage series at work that has almost doubled our church attendance, it’s brilliant stuff. Seems like everywhere these days, I see uplifting encouragement for marriages… I love it!

  14. 22

    says

    I can’t stop looking at how thin you are even in really WHITE tights. :D I’m jealous.

    You recommended this book about 2 1/2 years ago and I promptly read it then. And for some reason a couple months ago I put it in my “to read” pile again. And here you are mentioning it AGAIN. I must need a tune up.

  15. 23

    says

    White tights……oh, I remember them well. I even had the ones with the pearlized sheen. PLEASE tell me those never make a come back.

    87 DAYS after your first kiss you were married?!? Wowza! It took us just a little longer…..liiiiiiiike, 2 & 1/2 YEARS. ;)

  16. 24

    says

    Have you read that book Love and Respect? We took a class at church based on videos of the seminars and OH MY GOSH was it eye opening. I mean, I had been to lots of marriage weekends and read books and nothing changed my perspective as much as the concept laid out there, that men value respect MORE than love from us, and what that means and how it looks. The things you’re talking about here fall right into that, but I highly recommend that book as well.

  17. 28

    says

    What do I do? Find out what his absolute favorite food / dessert is and figure out how to make the very best version of it. Then make and perfect it.

    I appreciate you bringing out that #1 thing he wants me to know. My hubs is wonderful and I know he loves me, but he does not always show it the way I want to see it. I need to really internalize how much he truly loves me.

    ~Donna

  18. 29

    Lanai says

    I’ve read most of the posts on here and I am so encouraged by the blog and everyones posts. I normally don’t ever read anything like this but something told me to read this one, total God thing. It has blessed me on more ways than one. Thank you all for your encouragement! God is SO good!

  19. 30

    says

    Kristen, I bought this book when you first mentioned it a year or more ago. It’s had a profound impact on me. Thank you for your heart in sharing with us. And thank you gor the gentle reminders to keep at it.

    <3

  20. 31

    says

    Great ideas in this post.

    Another helpful book is “Becoming a Godly Wife” (BGW) by Gil and Dana Stieglitz. It lists 7 needs a wife can fulfil to really show her husband that she loves him. They are Respect, Adapt, Domestic leadership, Intimacy, Companionship, Attractive soul & body and Listening. Doing these things will make a R.A.D.I.C.A.L. difference in the marriage.

    I saw some other good ideas in the comments. I compiled them and will pass them along to the group of gals who just went through the BGW book.

  21. 34

    says

    Love. This. Post. Thank you so much for sharing this much needed message. We have been talking a lot about marriage and love laying it all down on my blog lately. So important for us as women to remember to honor and respect our husbands and to learn their love language!

    I wrote a post awhile back on this subject:

    http://sufficientgrace-kelly.blogspot.com/2010/03/loving-your-husband-in-his-language.html

    Thanks for encouraging women in marriage…and affirming husbands in this post! =)

  22. 35

    Tracy says

    i guess i feel overwhelmed by this post. I can’t be everything to everyone. I particularly find it disheartening to read into: taking better care of herself to translate into physical consumption. I don’t think men or God are saying hey you- put on more make up….(cause if that’s the case i’m a lost cause- i don’t wear make up daily etc) i think this is where women can find freedom & time to really take care of themselves. i would imagine most hubby’s would say there wives are stressed, don’t say no enough & are over committed. Have poor self esteem instead of Christ-Esteem.(seeing yourself as Christ see you) I read any amazing book called Men Are Like Waffles–Women Are Like Spaghetti-by Christian writers. From this book, I took the idea that my hubby is not always running around crazy or frantic, b/c he compartmentalize his thoughts & is better capable of staying in the moment…(frustration to me sometimes, yes)
    in conclusion, i hope that some one can read this & translate it to taking better care of themselves (as a whole person)-making sure you are balanced, not crazy over committed & at peace with themselves (inside & out)
    b/c i think if someone reads & has a difficult time accepting themselves (as their hubby or God loves them) they are going to be crushed to think- one more thing to add to my imperfections.
    Thanks for letting me ramble! I love your blog
    Tracy

  23. 36

    Victoria says

    I just called him, after reading your post, and told him how proud I am of him and how much I appreciate all he does with our son while I work, etc. He said it made his day. :) Praise the Lord for His timely Word through you! I love your blog! God bless and God bless all of our marriages and husbands!

  24. 39

    says

    This is excellent!! The book is great…the study is even better (accountability with a small group)…. And yet, having the knowledge is only one piece. What you wrote is spot-on: practical ways to apply the knowledge of how to love our husbands well.
    Thanks for the conviction -
    Teri @ StumblingAroundInTheLight.com

  25. 41

    says

    Awesome post. My husband & I have a great marriage (nearly 25 years), but I have to watch that I don’t become complacent. Thank you for this lovely reminder.

    You look like a pixie in that photo. Too cute!!

  26. 43

    says

    Great picture!

    I met my husband when I was 16…in Algebra class. His green eyes and boyish smile enchanted me. Three years later, we were married (one of the very best days of my life…not the wedding, but the being married part).

    I need to remember to pull out that lacy thing in the back of my drawer more often (why does it take such effort? I wonder…).

  27. 44

    says

    This is such a great post and one that I needed to be reminded of. I simply adore my husband and express my gratitude to him almost daily. We have a great relationship, but I can always do more. I love that list of 10 really simple and easy things things to do. Thank you Kristen!

  28. 45

    says

    That book changed my life, too. It’s a little scary to read, but I think every woman needs to read it. We just aren’t taught these things about men, and a wife HAS to know them.

    I love this post! :)

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