As women we desire for our husbands to be there when we go through difficulties. We want them to listen to us and not solve the problem, but to know that they care about what we are experiencing. These thoughts have been on my heart this past month and I just felt that I needed to share.
I have mentioned in previous blogs that my husband has been under tremendous stress at work, so much so that we are considering other options. It has been a very difficult time for my dear man and through it all I am learning how to better love and support my husband. Love is a different thing for him, and is for most men. It is not the same for women. The love that speaks to men is actually respect. Studies have shown that men could live without love, but not without respect.
Here are some lessons I have discovered along the way of how you can support your husband, whether he is in the midst of a difficult situation, or he just needs to know how much you appreciate him.
Be a good listener.
With the amount of stress and tension my husband has been experiencing at work, he needs me to be a sounding board for him. That has meant often changing my schedule around so that I am more available to listen to him. He doesn't expect me to solve the problem for him, because I definitely can't. I have heard that men think about the section (drawer) that they have open in their brain. I know that once he talks through things he is able to close that drawer and not dwell on it anymore until he opens it again. As women, that is harder to do. But I have been choosing to talk through things when he needs it, and not continue to bring it up, because that only puts more burden and stress on him. Most times after he shares his difficulties, we take time to pray together.
Be a prayer warrior.
I can't even begin to tell you the amount of hours that I have been in prayer for my husband throughout the days this past month. We both know that our strength can only come through Christ. We need His wisdom and strength for each situation we face each day. I pray constantly as I go about my day.
Don't make too many demands.
Okay, we really shouldn't make any demands. This one has been a little harder for me. I have had a goal to get the house completely cleaned up, sorted, dejunked this summer while our boys are away serving at camp. It is a prime opportunity for me to work while they are gone. Now I am down to a little over a week left to finish up all of my projects. A lot of the things left on the list are things that require my husband's input as well. I struggle with knowing what I can ask him to help with and which I should just let go for now. I know he is under tremendous stress throughout the day and I do not want to put any more on him when he gets home. I still am praying for the balance in this area.
One of my husband's love languages is physical touch. This is not an area that I usually exceed at, but I am working on it. I know that just simple touches like rubbing his arm, scratching his back or playing with his hair speaks volumes of love to him and I really am trying to work on doing those things for him.
Support him no matter what.
This is an area that requires letting go and trusting God. It means letting my husband know that I love, support, respect him in all the decisions that he makes and I trust him to lead our household and to make the best decisions for all of us. Even if it means stepping out in faith, jumping off that ladder and having faith that God will catch us.
Help him in the areas where he is weak.
We all have our strengths and weaknesses. Recognize the areas where your spouse is weak and do what you can to come along side him and provide that support and encouragement that he needs. Be willing to go beyond yourself to reach out to him.
I mentioned before how much respect speaks to a man. Do whatever you can to let your husband know that you respect him and the decisions that he makes. He won't always make the right choices, but then again, neither do we.
Be his cheerleader.
If he is considering branching out in a new area, let him know that you are 100% behind him. Tell him how proud you are of him and the choices he is making. Cheer him on as he chooses new options and let him know that you know he can do it.
Is there something that you can do today to love, respect and support your husband?