What Every Husband Needs to Hear



I wrote this to honor my husband on Father’s Day, but didn’t have a chance to post it last week. Thanks for all the emails and love.


When he walked thru the door, I let out the breath I’d been holding for days. The pinch in-between my shoulders eased and the throbbing in my head paused.

My husband was home.

He is my other half, the calm to my temper, the quiet to my chatter, the hard shoulder for my weary head.

Grief has changed us this year. The easy ebb and flow of our union has been harder, but our love has gone deeper. I can feel it in my bones and when we are away from each other, it’s like I’m split in two.

I let the day spill out. Just mom stuff mixed with work and weariness. I hadn’t started dinner, I had one kid pouting, the laundry in various stages, there was even a twin mattress on my front porch from sickness and a dog in need of another bath because she insists on rolling in dead things. He put his hands on my shoulders and he listened. Then he sent me to Target.

He’d gotten up hours before the sun that day, spent the remainder in a pressure pot at work, rushed in to lend a hand and the first thing he does is touch my soul.

What Every Husband Needs to Hear:

(I filled in the blanks for my husband, you fill them in for yours)

  • I Appreciate You: In the nearly 19 years we’ve been married, you have been a bank teller, a pastor, a church custodian (while being a pastor), mowed lawns, worked for my dad, been a salesman and a part time, volunteer bookkeeper. In all our seasons, the good, the bad and the ugly (I’ll let you guess), I have never once doubted your ability or desire to provide for our family. Husband-you have helped me pursue my dream of being a writer, while sidelining your own. You said yes to a crazy dream that changed our lives. You are the rock of our family because you put your faith in The Rock of Jesus.
  • I Love You for Being the Fun Parent: You’ve rolled down grassy hills, dressed up for Halloween, played Princess Makeover (you look great in pink) and rough-housed with kids at bedtime for over a decade. Being fun comes easy for you. You don’t worry about messes or your agenda, you simply enjoy your children. And all your fun with all my rules, make us a pretty good parenting pair.
  • Thank You for Doing all the Stuff I Don’t (or Can’t) (or Won’t):You’ve carried my too-heavy floral purse without batting an eye, you are the Master Ninja of cleaning up vomit and hairballs and poop (and you name it) and you unload the dishwasher because you know it’s my least favorite job. I love that you do it because you love me and us and I love that about you.
  • I Still Want You: We’ve endured years of painful infertility, a failed adoption, a miscarriage, two strong-willed girls, a child who is afraid of the dark and years of children in and out of our bed. You give me B-12 shots every Monday and don’t mind my mommy middle. You’ve wanted me through various sizes and moods and years and it thrills me. I may not say it often or show it enough, but never doubt I still long for you. Marriage is like fine wine, it’s getting better with age.
  • Thanks for Being Here: I know that you’re not perfect. You might read this and think of all the things you’re not, but in a fatherless culture,  and a society of broken marriages, you have stayed. When our marriage nearly ended, you fought to stay. When we got on the roller coaster ride of parenting, you dug in your heels. You are here and most days, even when we have no idea what we’re doing, you never leave. And that’s enough every day.
  • Trials Will Make Us Stronger: The past six months have been difficult in so many ways. I know you are tired. Challenges leave us on edge and sometimes broken. But the adversity and trials we face strengthen us and I know we will make it.

Pick one or two and tell your husband. He needs to hear encouraging words from you.


  1. 2


    I love this! I got sweet tears in my eyes reading it. It is definitely an awesome tribute to your husband. Thanks for sharing and inspiring other wives to do the same!

  2. 3


    Beautiful. I spent too long being bitter over the past year, instead of being grateful. I’m re-learning how to notice the wonderful things my husband does, and to tell him. They really do need to hear those building-up words about the big things, not just about the little things you wish they would do! (And then? When they hear how loved they are? It seems like it empowers them to do the little things, too!) :) Thanks for your example, Kristin. Praying for you two as you grieve… for patience with each other, for overflowing love and for hope. <3

  3. 4

    Lisa Wheeler says

    I love reading your blog….thank you for sharing your heart. My guy needs to hear some of these things as well. I get too caught up in the day to day keeping my head above water, keeping the kiddos alive, giving them something to somewhat nourish them and being a friend, daughter, niece, plus a side gig called being a court reporter that he gets what’s left and the majority of the time it’s not a whole lot. Plus, I find when I make the extra effort to love up on my husband, it comes back to me twofold and makes us closer. Thank you, again, for sharing this!

  4. 6


    My husband’s love language is words of affirmation. We’ve been married almost 9 years, and it took me about 5 to figure out that hearing words like this aren’t just nice for him — they’re NECESSARY.

  5. 8


    Amazing, beautifully written post. I think you guys are mirroring our lives just in the states while we’re overseas! We’re going on 18 years, infertility, miscarriages and my man also looks amazing in pink and can clean up hairballs with the best of them which is a good thing with 5 women in the house (3 of whom are long haired brunettes!) AND like I said, we live overseas where they plumbing is, well, less than ideal! Praying for you and your sweet family especially this week. Blessings.

  6. 10

    AmberK says

    What a blessing you two have in each other….thanks for reminding us like you that 1. we are blessed and 2. we should tell the other one we think so. 😉 Kristen, I just adore your spirit. And this includes your ‘keepin it real’ you moments, too. :)

  7. 12

    Jude says

    You said it so well! Thank you for sharing this and giving us permission to use parts of it as it was a good reminder to say the things my husband so needs to hear.

  8. 14


    I am daily thankful for great husbands and humbled that I have been blessed with one! Mines empties the dishwasher every morning, too (also because he knows it’s one of my least favorite “home-loving” tasks). Lovely of you to share this list with the rest of us!

  9. 15


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