Archive for the ‘ Marriage ’ Category

Wives: 11 Thoughts Out of Your Husband’s Head –

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Ok, I know a lot of wives read my blog, even though it’s geared toward the husbands. I often wondered why, until I had several female readers comment and send me emails saying “I love your blog, because it helps me understand what’s going on in my husband’s brain.” (As if we’re really that complicated, right guys?!) And it’s funny how different the male and female thinking patterns are.

Just the other day, I was telling me wife something, and in the middle of my sentence, she stopped me and said “Wait, you REALLY think that way? Like that’s how a guy thinks about it?!” It amazed her! So I got to thinking, what if there are a LOT of things that wives have no clue about how their husband’s think? I guess then the other question would be “Do they WANT to know what their husbands are thinking?”, but I guess if you’re reading this post, you’re at least curious. ;)

So, with that in mind, here are 11 things that your husband would LOVE from you, but would probably never ask for, or if he did, he would end up doing it in a way that you would probably take offence to. Now here’s the deal though,  don’t read this post and get all bent out of shape. Read it in the way it was meant to be read. Like if you were able to pry open your husband’s head, and read a few of his thoughts. These are not things you HAVE to do, or you’re not a good wife of you DON’T do, they’re just things he would LIKE you to do once and a while. What you do with that knowledge, is up to you. 

1. He needs you to think he’s amazing at things – Your husband LOVES to hear you say things like “Hey hon, the lawn looks amazing!”, or “I can’t believe you came up with that great business idea! I would have never thought of that one!”. He basically needs to know that you aren’t only concerned about the things he may need work on. He wants to hear you believe in him, and even though he might not think he’s up to the level that HE thinks he needs to be, he wants to know that you’re in his corner. You’re pulling for him. You’re shouting down all the naysayers and going “You watch what my husband can do! He can do whatever his sets his mind to!” And though he might pull the “oh hon, stop” thing, inside, he can’t stop smiling. You just made his day.

2. He wants to know you enjoy(ed) sex - Ever notice that your husband may bring up a sexual interlude that you had last night, or the day before, and say things like “Man, that was great the other night!”, or “Did you like when we did (insert sexual activity) a couple of days ago?” Yeah, that’s because he’s hoping to hear you say something like “Amazing? Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe it! When you were doing (insert activity here) to me, I thought I was going to go to heaven right there!” – or something like that. ;) Every man has this deep desire to know that his wife thinks he’s amazing in bed. Don’t ask me why. I just know it’s true. Everything from enhancement pills, to ads on TV is telling him that he “needs to be better/longer/bigger/etc in bed, and in the back of his mind he’s asking “I wonder if she thinks I’m boring, not big enough, or not good at pleasing her?” And if he’s NOT the world’s best lover? Just focus on the things he IS good at in bed, and tell him about those. That will do way more to encourage him to grow in the other areas he’s not so good at, than telling him he is bad at them. Make sure he knows you LOVE being with him sexually, and when he rocks your world, tell him all about it –  in vivid detail!

3. He wants to hear “Thanks” sometimes - This one’s pretty simple. Your husband works hard every day to bring home enough money to either support, or help support the family. He doesn’t need it much, but every 6 months or so, look him in the eye, and tell him “Hey babe, you’ll never know how much it means to me that you work hard for our family every day. Thanks for getting up when you don’t feel like it, for dealing with crabby customers, and going to work for me and our family.” Little comments like that go a long way for your husband.

4. He wants you to sexually surprise him sometimes – Most likely, your husband is pretty satisfied with your sex life. The “normal” thing you do, works great 8 out of 10 times, and for the most part, he wouldn’t change a thing. But every once in a while, surprise him with something different. Maybe it’s YOU coming on to HIM. Maybe it’s a different location. Maybe it’s you texting him at work and telling him you can’t wait to (fill in the blank) to him tonight. Maybe it’s giving him the normal “I’m home from work hug”, but letting your hand slide down a little further then you normally do, to let him know what’s on the schedule later. The little things like that let your husband know that you still like having sexual fun with him, like you used to BEFORE the kids invaded the house. ;) Even if you didn’t come up with the idea, and go along with an idea that is “out of the ordinary” for you two, that’s fine. Just don’t roll your eyes, or give “the sigh” when he says “Hey babe, wanna do it (_______) tonight!”

5. He’d love you to give him a NAKED massage - Yeah, you read that right. A naked one. Here how it works. He gets home from work after having a bad day. You say “Sorry you day was lousy honey. Tonight after the kids go to bed, I’ll give you a massage.” Just leave it at that. Then, when the time comes, tell him to go lay face down on the bed, or wherever you’re giving the massage, because you have to “get ready”. See how long it takes him to notice you’re just wearing panties (if that). TIP: Tell him you can’t quite get his back well enough standing, so you’re going to have to straddle him “for better reach”. Sure, it might turn into a shorter massage session then you might have with a “clothed massage”, but let’s just say your husband will have a hard time remembering why his day was so bad. ;)

6. He loves it when you smell good/look nice when he comes home from work - He will never mention this, but he loves it when he comes home from work, and you smell good, and look like you didn’t just roll our of bed. From the day that he started dating you, he’s always liked how you always smell good, and you know we think you’re the most beautiful girl he knows. Now don’t get me wrong, he knows you’ve been with the kids all day long, and feel like you’ve been run over by a herd of elephants, so he’s not talking 4 inch heels and a dress. Just have jeans and a t-shirt on, run a brush through your hair, and blast a quick spray of that perfume that he really likes. Just this little effort, goes a long way in telling your husband you care about him, and know that he loves looking at you, and being close to you.

7. He loves it when you build him up around friends – Say you’re hanging out in a group, or with another couple. Your husband LOVES it when you compliment him about something in public. Makes him feel about 10 feet tall. For example, say you’re talking in the group with another wife, about what your husbands do for work. Instead of saying “Bryan (your husband) works in construction.” Say something like “Bryan works in construction, you should see some of the work he does. He’s really good at it.” It doesn’t require 10 seconds more to say, but let me tell you, your husband will be beaming. He wants/needs your affirmation that he’s good at what he does, even if it’s working at the gas station. This is HUGE for him.

8. He loves it when you compliment his um, well….his…..oh, you know what I mean. – Another one of the things he’ll never tell you to do, but next time you are in the middle of foreplay, and you look down to see that he’s quite excited to be there, say something like “Wow! You look huge tonight!” Anything to that effect. Just watch what it does to his confidence.

9. He needs you to assure him that he’s being a good dad. - This is one thing a lot of guys (including myself) feel like they never quite measure up to. They really feel the weight of being a good role model, etc, but always feel like we fail when it counts, or shouldn’t have yelled at the kids that time, or maybe I should have acted differently that time, etc. When you notice him doing something good with the kids, say “Hon, you’re a really good dad. Just want you to know that.” Also, if he doesn’t put on the baby’s diaper on quite like you do, or handles a situation with the kids differently than you would have, avoid the urge to jump in and “do it right”. It makes him feel like he’s another one of the kids. He’s doing the best he can. Don’t micro manage  how he does it.

10. He loves it when you ask if you can help - There are a lot of times we feel overwhelmed with life, work, chores, church commitments, etc, but don’t want to ask you for help, because we don’t want to add to your already seemingly massive load. What we don’t realize, is that most times you WANT to support and help us, but are waiting for us to ask you. Well, most times, we won’t. But don’t be afraid to ask! Just say something like “Hey hon, I’ve noticed you’re a bit overwhelmed lately. Can I do anything to help?” Most likely he’ll welcome the help, and appreciate that you noticed.

11. Sometimes he wishes you’d just give him a hand-job - Yes, again, that’s what I said. Hey, I told you I’m being honest here. If you know it’s been a while since you’ve had sex, and you know he’s frustrated about it, but you still don’t feel like having sex (period, bad timing, etc), don’t ask, just roll over to his side of the bed, and offer him a hand-job. I’m telling you, it doesn’t matter if your mind is “into it”, or if your “emotionally ready”, or whatever other thing you might try to throw in there for a reason that you just don’t feel like giving him one. He needs to be with you sexually. You can’t “go all the way” right now. But you CAN help him make it until you feel like it. It may be hard for you to believe, but you will be the biggest hero on earth to your husband if you take the 3 minutes it takes, to help relieve the urge that is ever-present on his mind until you do. Oh, and he will be much easier to live with for the next few days. I know it’s hard for you girls to believe that the whole world can be solved with a hand-job, but sometimes for your husband, it can.

Her Period and You – A few Survival Tips

 

 

Re-posted from a previous post…..

Yes, I’m going where few men dare to go. Believe me, it took some time to talk myself into doing this post, but here I am. Now why would a guy do a blog post about a woman’s period? Well, because if you’re married (and I’m assuming you are if you’re reading my blog), let’s just say your wife’s period tends to “effect” you also (like causing you to hide in the garage for 3 or 4 days). So, what is it about that time of the month that strikes fear into the most hardened “manly men”? It could be the thought of your wife turning into an irrational, irritable ball of emotions, but I think it’s mostly because we don’t understand itAt all. So in the interest of being a “student of our wives”, let’s delve into this “terrifying subject” that few men are brave enough to think about – let alone address – and see if we can’t learn how to at least support her through it, and not lose our minds in the process. Ready? (Um, why are you still hiding behind that chair? You realize I can see you right?) Here goes…

Now obviously I don’t know ANYTHING first hand about periods, but my wife sure does, and after a few years of dreading that time each month, I decided to actually ask her some questions about how she feels during “that time”, and what I could do to help her get through them better, and with less frustration aimed at me. Here’s what I found out – They don’t like them either – You think you’re wife’s period is hard on you? Try being the one going through it! Without mentioning the obvious effects, there’s the bloating, cramping, back pain, and need we mention being the passenger on the runaway rollercoaster of emotions that they can’t find a way off of? Doesn’t sound like something I’d volunteer for.

Don’t run the other way – I know this is like saying to “run towards the house fire, not away”, but understand this – most times when they are “going off” about some little thing, and acting like it’s this HUGE issue, it all comes down to a self-esteem thing. Right now their hormones have them feeling like they aren’t doing well at anything, and everything they do is failing or not working right. So your wife yelling at you about putting one white sock in the dark load of laundry, is really her saying that she is upset at herself that she didn’t get the laundry done, and you had to help with it. I know, you might have you read that last sentence again, but according to my lovely wife, that is how they feel. A normal man’s response to this would be to either blow up back at her, or go “whatever” and try to stay away from her as much as possible. Here’s where we mess up though! Instead – what she needs is for you to go up to her and put your arms around her and say something like “it’s ok hon, I love you”. Remember, her acting out is her insecurity about the issue, so what she needs from you is to re-assure her, and tell her that it’s going to be ok. Now I can hear you saying “are you crazy?! You want me to go up to my wife who is currently yelling at me about the smallest issue, and give her a hug?” Yes I am! I KNOW it’s crazy hard to do, but this is marriage, remember? This isn’t a walk in the park. She knows she’s being irrational and making no sense at all, but right now it’s how she is crying out for you to reassure her. If you run the other way, it’s just going to make it worse.

Realize she’s not herself right now – This is a big one for us guys. As guys we tend to take every thing literally, regardless of what time of the month it is. So when your wife says something like “I never have any money to spend for myself, you always buy whatever you want” during her period, don’t go out and put a “For Sale” sign on the boat. Ask her about it in an hour, and she will probably have totally changed her mind, or brush it off like it was no big deal – leaving you totally confused because what she was just making a huge issue of, is now “no big deal”. Say hello to hormones. During her period, my wife says that there are times she feels “normal”, and other times she feels like she’s not herself at all. We have to keep reminding ourselves that this is the case, and if she makes a comment about a large issue that your “I’m going to fix it” personality wants to jump in and fix right away, wait until after she’s done with her period to bring it up again and see if it really needs addressed.

Do the simple stuff – Show her that you care about her not feeling well at the moment. Sure, it’s easier to just grit our teeth and close our eyes until it’s over, but is that being a servant? Remember the whole “sickness and health” part? Warm up a heating pad for her back, help with the housework, do the dishes, cook dinner. These are all simple little things, but they mean a lot to our wives.

There! We made it through! I told you it wouldn’t be as bad as you thought. Or maybe it was. Regardless, at least you’re a little better prepared to deal with it. Oh, and don’t be afraid to ask your wife what would be a help to HER when those days come around every month. Each woman is different, but the principle remains; just because it’s a hard topic, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be willing to help. We need to stop hiding out, and start helping out. It might not be easy, but you’ll be glad you did. 

Why Valentines Day Makes Me Want To Barf –

Image: A man carries a bunch of ballons as he walks down Union Street on Valentine's Day

 

If there’s one thing I hate, it’s being forced by someone to do something. Not because It’s from my heart, but because that’s what you’re “supposed to do”.

Maybe that’s why I’ve never been a big fan of Valentines day. Now don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a GREAT idea to be romantic with your wife, get her flowers, make dinner for her, put rose petals on the bed, etc, etc – I guess I just feel that you should be doing that ANYWAY, not just on the one day that Hallmark decided we should.

It’s like all the stores that sell all the pink Mylar balloons, the heart-shaped candy boxes, the cards, the 62 inch teddy bears holding a heart that says “be mine”, all got together and said, “What kind of holiday can we create where we force people to buy stuff every year, even if it’s not really something they want to do?” It’s a perfect plan really. Guys feel guilty, and even if their wives say “don’t get me anything this year”, you always wonder if they’re just saying that, and get something anyway. Drives me batty.

All this being said, how do we get around it though? How do we get out of HAVING to do something spectacular on Valentines Day, just because “that’s what you do”?

Well, here’s the funny part. You’d think the wives would LOVE the holiday right? After all, it’s all about romantic things, over-sized cards, girly colors, etc. Sounds like a girl’s dream! Well, here’s the truth – I’ve had a ton of wives say that they “hate” Valentines day. Hate it. That’s a strong word. And you know why? Because they KNOW that their husband is just doing this stuff, not from his heart (or not totally anyways), but because he HAS to. She would much rather have him do/buy something because he saw it, made him think of her, and decided to bring it home for her. Not for the “I have to” reason.

So I would like to pose the question to all husbands - What if we just did the things that we’re “supposed to do” on Valentines Day – the entire year?

And no, I don’t mean you have to bring home a 36″ Mylar heart balloon every day. Please, DON’T do that. What I mean is, what if we keep the romance/gifts/pursuing of our wives going all year-long, when Valentines Day comes around, your wife will be so used to having you do that stuff for her anyway, and actually doing it from your heart, Valentines day, and all the foof that comes with it, seems kind of sad and pathetic.

To me, if we as husbands have to wait for someone to TELL US we need to go out and buy a bunch of roses, or something little that we know she’d like, or light the candles and put rose pedals on the bed every once in a while, we deserve the pain/frustration that comes with heading down to the local Hallmark to find that half-hearted gift/bouquet on V-Day. Don’t be that guy!

Be the husband who thrives on making his bride feel like he’s pursuing her like he did when they were dating. Be the husband that makes sure he knows what his bride’s love language is, and speaks it often. Be the husband who sees something in a store, and buys it, not because it’s expensive, or pink, or is in the shape of a heart, but because he loves his wife, and knows that little thing will make her smile.

What I’m trying to say, is if you’re like me, and get a strange nauseous feeling in your stomach when you think of Valentines day, it’s time to do something about it. Don’t just be part of the “herd” standing in line with 12 dozen red roses on the 14th. Be the one guy standing there with a dozen red roses (or whatever her favorite flower is) on January 11th, and March 1st, and September 15th. You get the idea. Maybe it’s time to decide ourselves, when we buy flowers, or teddy bears, or pajama grams. Maybe it’s time to quit letting a day in February decide when we’re romantic. Maybe it’s time to be the husband we vowed we’d be on our wedding day, all year-long. 

Oh, and Happy Valentines Day. 

Bad Sex Life? Here are Some Reasons Why.

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Not satisfied with your current sex life? You’re not alone. Here are a few things that don’t help it get any better.

Kids in your bed. – Oh I can hear the comments now, but before you try to figure out where I live, so you can slash my tires, hear me out. If you have kids sleeping with you on a REGULAR (in other words more than not) basis, it is having a negative impact on your sex life. If there has ever been a libido killer, it would be getting kneed in the head by your 4-year-old all night long. Here’s the deal – your marriage bed is just that - YOURS. It’s not the community bed, it’s not the “I don’t want to deal with making you sleep in your own bed, so just get in” bed, it’s the bed that you and your wife sleep (and hopefully have lots of sex) in. You shouldn’t have to get through 2 or 3 other small bodies, before you can spoon with your wife. Now I’m not saying there aren’t exceptions – sick kids, bad dreams, etc, but even then, they need to know that this is mommy and daddy’s bed, and they have their own bed to sleep in. Is it easier to just give in? You bet. Have we even done that for a night? Once or twice, yes. But for crying out loud, please don’t let it become a habit. Oh, and it’s MUCH easier to keep it from starting, then it is to stop it AFTER it’s been going on for 6 months.

No LUBE. – Your erection doesn’t always equal her wetness. Sorry, wish it did. Maybe before kids, but not now. And let me tell you, sex without lubrication is just plain painful. Find a lube you both like (The best hands down we have ever found is the Pjur Bodyglide. Best. Lube. Ever.) And then get yourself a small nice looking (could be tinted glass, etc) pump bottle, and keep it on the nightstand beside your bed. Tell the kids it’s hand sanitizer. Or Lotion. Or massage oil. The point is, you don’t want to have to be running to the closet, or lifting up the mattress, to be digging out a lube bottle, during the heat of the moment. Make it easy to access, and ready when you need it.

Not talking about what your expectations are. – If you are expecting to have sex 4 times a day, and she is thinking twice a week, you’re both going to be a bit annoyed/surprised when the other person doesn’t seem to be on the same page. Get it all out in the open. How many times a week would be ok for you? What things would you like to do/try, etc. and be honest about it all! At least then even if you’re worlds apart in your desires/needs, you can at least navigate to some sort of compromise, that doesn’t leave you both wanting to scream all the time.

Porn. – No matter what anybody will try to tell you, porn will NEVER make your sex life better. It if seems to, it is only short-lived, and ends up with one party feeling hurt/not good enough, instead of loved and treasured. You can read more about that HERE. The other thing about porn, is that it turns your “normal” sex drive into a “hyper” sex drive, due to the almost constant mind stimulation. Plus, you’re no longer horny for you wife, you’re horny because you looked at porn, and now you want to use your wife to satisfy that urge. The urge that never started with her in the first place. Take it from a guy who’s been there and has learned the hard way that it’s NOT worth it. I don’t care if your wife never has sex with you, porn is a lie, and while it may seem to satisfy the need, it really just leads to more despair. Don’t use it.

Lack of communication with your wife. – Listen guys, if your wife doesn’t feel like she knows what’s on your heart, shares in any of the things you are struggling with, or that you even care about what happened to her during the day, it’s going to be hard swimming for you later that night when you crawl into bed after watching the 10pm SportsCenter and mention that you’re horny. Yeah, not happening. You have got to keep the lines of communication open with your bride! Ask her how she’s doing. Ask her what’s on her heart. Ask her how you can be a better husband to her, support her more, or take a load off of her. Roll up your sleeves, and get in there! I know it’s hard, I know we hate talking about the little things after a long day at work, but if you want her to be able to respond to you more sexually, you’re going to have to do some of the work to get there. You can’t expect her to not see you or hear from you all day, and then lay back say “take me now” when you crawl into bed.

Staying up until the wee hours of the morning, playing video games. – This one really shouldn’t be hard to understand, but I get emails from wives about it all the time. “My husband won’t come to bed with me, so we never have sex.” Or “My husband is so wrapped up in video games when he get’s home from work, he doesn’t make time to talk to me anymore.” Come on men, we’re not 14 anymore. Video games are cool, but you didn’t marry a video game, you married your wife, remember? If she is begging for your time, or good grief – for you to come to bed and have sex with her, I think you’ve let the video games become WAY too important, and may want to look at taking the wedding band off of the PlayStation, and putting it back on your wife’s finger.

Being BAD at it. – Let’s face it guys, there’s not much to us being satisfied sexually. For us, it’s pretty simple – insert tab A, into slot B, and move back and forth for a while. For our wives however, we need to have a bit of skill, or “know how”, to make sure they are enjoying it just as much as we seem to effortlessly do. (Read more about how to do that HERE) Let me put it plainly – know your wife’s vagina. Yes, I said VAGINA. You need to know what she likes, you need to know where all the pleasure zones are, you need to learn how to stimulate them, etc. Don’t know how? Get yourself a book, or find something online, whatever you choose to do, but it’s time we stop saying “well golly, I didn’t know there was a G-spot!”, and other naive things, and start raising the bar a little. It’s not rocket science, it just takes some effort. If the feeling you got out of sex every time was “that’s it?!”, I’m pretty sure you would have more headaches too.

Too Many Distractions! – Life get’s crazy;  kids running around everywhere, bills to pay, budgets to write, school work to grade, deadlines to meet – the list goes on! Sometimes you need to just GET AWAY for a few days to some little cabin where the cell phones don’t work, and there ain’t no Wi-Fi. Some place where you actually have to be alone with each other, with NOTHING to do. Well, not nothing, but nothing that needs to be done while your clothes are on. Be willing to take those times away, and get to know each other again. Send the kids to the grandparents, or friends, or wherever, and learn to GET AWAY. Sometimes what your sex life needs is just some privacy. Don’t underestimate the power of some time away.

Ok, how about you? What are some things you’ve figured out, that kill the mood, or the chance of the mood happening?

The Journey of Marriage – Some Things I’ve Learned in the First 9 Years.

young-couple-walking

You know the saying “hindsight is 20/20″? Well, it applies in marriage also. The following is a few things I wish I could have gone back in time and told myself when I was first starting out on this husband journey, almost 9 years ago:

When she’s hormonal, don’t take everything she says at face value.  - Here’s the deal, she’s going to get hormonal, and most of the times she has NO IDEA what she just said. Now telling her that at the time is NOT a good idea, but when I was first married, I actually thought she MEANT what she was saying (or ranting about), and what I have come to find out is that while she is forming the words, most times WHAT she is saying is propelled by a huge hormone rush, and she doesn’t mean at all. This is something our wives WISH they could control, but can’t at the time. So, if it’s “that time of the month”, and she says “You need to sell the boat!!”, Don’t put up the for sale sign just yet. Wait a few days and then ask again. (I had my wife read through this post before I published, and she wanted to add the following, addressed to the wives that may be reading this post: Ok, ladies, here’s the thing, I know when I am hormonal I say things I don’t mean, or even remember later. While I am very glad Mission:Husband has learned not to take it personally, please know that it doesn’t give me an excuse to fall into this sin.  Don’t take the statement to your husband as an excuse or someone saying it’s okay.  It’s not!  While I struggle with controlling my words when my hormones are out of whack, I know it is still sin.  I have been working on fixing this.  I’ve been trying to line everything I say up with Ephesians 4:29 “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.”  Remember, even if your hubby doesn’t take it personally, it still should be our goal to build him up at all times, and not justify our sin just because it is easier.)

Enjoy the “pre-kids” stage. – We have four kids, and I wouldn’t want to go through life without ANY one of them, but BEFORE I had kids, I didn’t understand that once I had kiddos, the lazy mornings staying in bed with your wife, or the “Hey! Let’s go for a 2 hour drive to the lake on the spur of the moment” days were going to change for a while. Not that they won’t come back someday, but just learn to enjoy the “pre kids moments”, before they’re gone . They will fly by.

It’s not in her “hardware” to be horny like you are, all the time. – Ok, so maybe we’re all a little naive when we first start out, but I had the idea that my bride was going to want sex as much/often as I did. I mean come on, she thinks I’m hot, right? Well, yes, she may think I’m hot, but after a few years of kids, diapers, getting gum out of hair, and trying to keep 4 kiddos alive, fed and bathed, it’s a little harder to get her motor running at the drop of a hat. Here’s what I’ve learned. We as guys go from thinking about it, to wanting to do it. The wives need to be touched/reminded about sex, letting their mind clear the other 10 things off of it, and THEN becoming ready to do something about it. I would spend days wondering why she wouldn’t come on to me/pursue me, and until I learned that it was MY job to pursue/remind/touch her – allowing her to then respond – I was one frustrated hubby. Bottom line, the only time your wife is going to be “aggressively horny”, is when she’s ovulating. The rest of the time, while she’s most likely to not be AGAINST the idea, she’s not going to come seeking it out. YOU have to get through your ego, and play your role in pursuing her.

Your wife thrives on communication with you – So I knew that girls like to talk, but I had no clue that my wife DEPENDS on communication with me, to feel connected, and close to me. Set aside some time AT LEAST every other day, to turn everything off, and talk with your wife. Let her know what’s bothering you, what you’re stressed about, what you need prayer for. And let HER talk about her day, and the things that we guys go “why do I care about what happened at the grocery store?!”. Really listen to her. You are showing her you care about HER and what matters to HER.

Watch out for the “wall builders”. - There are certain issues, or even day-to-day things, that slowly, brick by brick, cause a wall to be built between you and your wife. It may be little things like if she said no to sex, or you blamed her for something she didn’t do, etc. You HAVE to be on the lookout for that wall starting to come up. Keep it torn down by keeping the lines of communication open, and being willing to say I’m sorry often, and really mean it. Life is way too short to try to keep score, and focus on the little stuff.

Find time to pray together in the morning before the day gets going. - This is HUGE, and is something we figured out just recently. Praying together about the day, and things that are on your hearts, keeps you on the same page, and makes you feel like you’re on the same team. It’s like starting your day off on the right foot. Being able to seek the Lord together as a couple, and let Him lead/show you where/what he wants you to lead the family he has given you, is crucial to maintaining the “God first” lifestyle we need to have in our families.

Kids are temporary, your marriage is with you the rest of your life. - Make time for your marriage, even during the “small kids” years. Make time to get away for a weekend. Make time for date nights. Make time for Romantic dinners/picnics. Here’s the bottom line. Someday your kids are going to make it through high school, and then move on, and out of your house, leaving you with either a dead marriage, or a marriage that has been taken care of, nurtured, and made a priority while the kids WERE in the house. Don’t let the kids become your life, and lose the very relationship that the kids were created from. My worst nightmare would be one where my wife and I get all the kids moved out of the house, and are left with trying to live in a relationship where we don’t even know each other.

Sex doesn’t always have to be earth shattering. – Before marriage, (we waited to have sex until our wedding night), I had this picture of sex being something AMAZING every time we had it. And while yes, there are times where it takes 10 minutes to catch your breath afterwords, please hear me when I say this; it doesn’t have to be that way every time for you to feel like you “did it right” or were “successful” or “passed the test”. As men we tend to judge our performance like it’s some sort of competition or something. It’s not. It’s you and your bride, coming together in a way that only you and her can, and if it’s not perfect, or simultaneous, or chandelier swinging, or 4th of July fireworks-e, it’s ok! Don’t buy into the “this is how sex should look/be” world version of it, but instead remember that sex is something that God created for the both of you to keep you close though the hard times, the good times, the exciting times, and even the times when you can’t seem to find the words through the sadness. Sex is so much more than Hollywood. Sex is part of your God designed relationship with your bride. Enjoy it. Learn about it. Treasure it, and fight like hell (sorry) to protect it from the things (porn, affairs, etc) that try to come inside that boundary, and destroy what God created to be so special between you and your wife.

How about you? What are some things that you’ve learned along the way, that you would have loved to learn a bit earlier?

Sex; It’s NOT just about YOU.

This is another “most popular” post from 2012…

As guys, we think sex is pretty awesome. In fact, we’d probably have a hard time thinking of something that we like doing more.

But how long has it been since we took  a hard look at what we’re doing to make sex just as enjoyable for our wives? Whether we’d like to admit it or not, we can get a little selfish in this area if we’re not careful. Part of being the husband God intended you to be, is MAKING SURE that you’re doing everything in your power to ensure your wife is reaching climax (if she desires one – more about that later), and that you are asking her what she likes, what feels good, what things she would like to try, what positions she likes best, etc. So often without even realizing it, us guys tend to do what feels good to us, without taking the time to even ask her what would make it better for her. If we want our wives to be as excited about making love as we are most of the time, I think it would be wise on our part to constantly be working on the following things -

The “Big O” – If you haven’t figured it out by now, women take a whole lot longer to “warm up” sexually, than us guys do. Think of it as a microwave vs. a crock pot. While men can be “ready to go” at the drop of a hat (or panties), and able to climax within a few minutes, most of our wives need some time to get there mentally, before the arousal process can even start. Now here’s the other thing guys -

there are times that our wives are totally happy with having intercourse without having an orgasm. This makes about as much sense to us guys as mowing the lawn without turning the lawn mower on, but it’s true.

Remember, sex is not all about the physical act to them. There is a lot of emotional connecting going on during sex for women too. That said, if she DOES desire to have an orgasm, we need to make sure that we are taking the time to slow down and help her get there. Since most of the time it’s hard for women to climax through penetration alone, this means we need to be ready to help her with our hands, or orally. Also – don’t get in such a hurry to start the “main event” that you make her feel pressured to “hurry up and make it happen already!” or make her think she’s “taking to long“. This will only make things worse. If you are having a hard time finding the right spot or speed, have your wife show you with her hand what feels good. Then try to simulate that. Communication is the key here. Don’t be too shy to ask her what she wants you to do. We’d like to think we are natural “masters” as satisfying our wives in bed, but most times there are things she wishes we would do, and if we’re too proud/shy to ask, we’ll never get any better. 

Vibrators/Toys - There are lots of different opinions out there on whether or not sex toys/aids are good/ok to use in the marriage bed. I’m not going to get into all that in this post. What I am going to do is give you what has worked for us, and then you can make the judgement for yourselves on what works/is appropriate for you.  What we’ve found with 3 small kids, and not always having a large amount of time to have “gourmet sex” every time, is while my wife may be interested/up for sex, the idea of spending enough time for her to become fully aroused, and able to climax manually, is somewhat daunting after a long day with the kids and 10pm approaching rapidly. So, after our first child was born, we decided to look for something to help her be able to “speed up the process” a little for those times when we wanted to enjoy each other sexually, but didn’t have time/energy for the “4 course meal” version of sex. We wanted something that could be used during penetration, but wanted to be careful because we found some medical articles with evidence that long-term use of a vibrator can damage the nerve endings of the clitoris and make it harder for a woman to orgasm without it. So, after quite a bit of research, we found something that doesn’t vibrate, but instead “oscillates” (moves rapidly in a “back and forth” motion) that we really like, and is nice to have when she desires to climax, but may not have a lot of time. Do we always use it when we make love? No. Is it nice to have something that helps her climax much faster when she desires it, but we don’t have a lot of time? Very. I feel that there are times our wives may say “no”  to sex on any given night, due to the pressure they feel from us (spoken or unspoken) to have an orgasm. If they are on the fence already about having sex (long day, tired, etc), the thought of having to spend 20 minutes to “get herself there” may just be the push she needs to say “not tonight”, because it seems like such a daunting task after a long day. This gives her an option where she can still climax and enjoy sexual time with her husband, but not be discouraged, and in turn distracted, because it’s “talking so long”. (Note: If you would like to know what we use,  drop me an email, and we’d be glad to share with you what we found that has helped us. Believe it or not, there are still some things even marriage bloggers don’t feel comfortable sharing on a public blog post ;) )

Lube up! – Another thing that can make sex less enjoyable, or even downright painful for your wife is lack of lubrication. If we rush right through the foreplay, and within a couple of minutes, try to enter her, odds are, she’s not going to magically be wet and ready to go. Remember the crock pot analogy? She needs some time to warm up! Without using any kind of lube, a woman needs between 15 to 20 minutes of foreplay (of course all women are different, but in general) to become  naturally lubricated enough for intercourse. What’s the moral to the story here? Get a bottle of good lube and keep it handy! The best one we have found (hands down) is the “Pjur Eros Original Body Glide Lube”, found on Amazon.com or most other sexual aid sites. It doesn’t dry up, doesn’t make a huge mess, and lasts for a long time. We have been through a lot of different brands/formulas, but always come running back to this one. Oh, and still not convinced you need lube? Try having your wife manually stimulate you without using any - it’s funny how fast you will change your mind.

What has worked in the past, may not work now – If it hasn’t happened to you yet, it will: You’re in bed, doing that thing that you know is always a “home run” in the “what I like in bed” category for your wife. At some point you look up however, to see a “less than thrilled”  or even a *gasp!* bored look on her face. You panic, wondering what in the world am I doing wrong? Relax! You’re not doing anything wrong. This is a really hard one for us guys to grasp sense for us it’s a “one movement fits all” thing, but for our wives it all can change due to pregnancy, time of the month, or sometimes I wonder – the color of the sky that day. (That was a joke) The thing to remember is DON’T get discouraged, or think you’ve lost your touch. Let her talk you through what now feels better, and don’t take it personally. Too often we take any form of rejection in bed (no matter how small), as an attack on us. It’s not.

Be a “student” of your Wife – I mentioned a little bit of this above, but what I’m trying to get at is always be looking for ways you can improve at pleasing her in the bedroom. Don’t settle for “good enough” and stop there. Doesn’t matter if you’re a new husband and don’t have a clue, or a husband that’s been married 40 years, there’s always room to get better! Don’t become complacent!

Don’t be afraid to laugh together! - As guys, we look at things in life as “tasks”. We need to get something done, so we form a plan on the best way to accomplish it, what we need to buy, what tools we need, etc. We know that if we have the “right tools” for the job, and a good plan, we will succeed. We “can’t fail” if we plan carefully (or so we try to convince ourselves). Here in lies the problem: If we try to transfer that attitude to the bedroom, we end up becoming frustrated if we’re doing something during lovemaking, and it’s not working like it was “supposed to”. This leads to an uneasy tension, and that is NOT good in what was supposed to be a time of connection between husband and wife. At this point we’ve lost the whole point. If something doesn’t work, LAUGH a little! This is supposed to be fun remember? We get so lost in “it has to happen this way”, that we lose sight of what we’re really supposed to be accomplishing overall. Sex is one of the greatest gifts God has given a married couple. Let’s make sure we are being patient, and helping our brides get the pleasure that God created her to get out of it. So get out there and get to work husbands! This is not exactly the worst job you’ve ever been given. ;)

“What’s the big deal about Underwear?” (A post for the wives)

This is a re-post from 2012 - 

Ok, am I really devoting a whole post to the subject of underwear? Sure am! And here’s why -

I’ve heard a lot of wives say “I just don’t think like my husband does. I wish I could just get inside his head sometimes”. First, I’m not sure you really mean that, since you might find it pretty boring at times (he really only thinks about one thing at a time?!), but there’s also a very good reason you don’t’ think like he does: You’re not a man. Men have a tendency to think thoughts that make wives get that look on their face of “really? when I do that, it makes you feel this way?” Trust me, every husband knows the look. It’s the same look you would give us if we suddenly told you that we wanted to try and build a rocket in the back yard that would put the first man on Mars.

That being said, I wanted to let you amazing wives in on a little secret, and it has to do with your underwear. But first, a little disclaimer – I’m telling you in this post how MOST husbands/guys think. There is always an exception to this rule, but odds are, your husband thinks like this. If you can read the following with an open mind, and with an attitude of “I want to learn how my husband thinks“, you’ll be blown away by how it will affect your husband if you try it.Ok, here goes -

What a wife chooses to wear for underwear, is a big deal for her husband. I know, I can see your eyes rolling already, but stay with me here. What a wife has a hard time understanding at times, is how much  this “talks” to her husband about how much she loves, desires, and cares about not only their sex life, but him in general. For example, if you’re always wearing black or tan “granny panties” and matching very “functional” but not at all “flirty” bra, you’re “saying”  TO HIM that you don’t really care about your sex life much, and you have pretty much given up on being flirty or fun in that area, for the sake of “hey, it’s just underwear, and it works just fine”.

Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that it was much easier to do this kind of thing, and actually think about it, BEFORE those little humans invaded your home called “children”. We get it if you need to wear a nursing bra (and no, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cute nursing bra) for those times in life when you’re breastfeeding. No problem. But the tendency is that once you’ve traded in the “sexy” for the “practical”, it’s just easier to not go back. And it matters to your husband. He may not say it, or even mention it anymore, but I guarantee he notices.

What’s the big deal? It’s just underwear! It’s not like anybody sees it besides him anyway. I don’t want to spend the extra money on cute panties, when I could just go to Costco and buy a 12 pack for $10!”

To a wife, that makes perfect sense, but let me let you in on what your husband is “hearing” when you decide to spend a few extra bucks on the cute, flirty, and a little sexier set. He is hearing things like “My wife knows that I’m the only person that ever sees those parts of her, but still takes the extra effort to know what I like, and wear them for me”. It makes your husband feel like he is still the priority over the kids, over your yoga class, over all the other stuff in your day. It makes him feel secure in knowing that you VALUE your intimate time together. It makes him feel like you desire him. It makes him feel like you VALUE him, and get a kick out of giving him little “thrills” like this. It also drives him crazy (in a good way), guessing on what you might be wearing “under there” that only he gets to see later. I know it’s a hard one to understand, but basically by wearing cute, flirty underwear, you’re telling your husband you love, desire, and take delight in enticing him (even though you may not understand the big deal) in this way. Who knew that underwear could say so much?!

One other thing, because I know you’re thinking it – Cute, sexy underwear, doesn’t have to be uncomfortable! I’m not suggesting you always have to wear some kind of leather thong, or push up bra! What I’m asking you to do, is find out what kind of underwear your husband likes, and to do that, maybe even take him shopping for it with you! Let me tell you, if you have a hard time getting him to give you a clothing budget, you will more than likely have no issue finding the “funding” for this shopping trip, if you word it something like this – “Hey hon, I was wanting to go shopping for some cuter panties and bra sets. Maybe you could even show me some you like. Would that be ok?”  – and watch that man go for his wallet! :) Another thing, guys get a little uncomfortable in “those kind” of stores, so when you go in, YOU have to make it look like it was YOUR idea to everyone watching. Then when you get to the picking them out part, he’s probably going to be a little shy to take the lead, and start picking stuff out, so a way that works good, is to pretend your “browsing” through the different panties/bras, and the whole time be quietly giving him the “yes or no?” look. He’ll be THRILLED that you are letting him have a say in what you choose. And don’t be afraid to compromise! Odds are, he’ll be a little more interested in the lace thong, than you will be, but maybe go for the more “normal” set with a lace back, or something like that. He’s still have a big goofy grin on his face, and you’ll end up with panties/bras you’ll actually be able to wear on a daily basis.

You have no idea how much your husband is in awe of your nude form. It’s hard for wives to understand this, because they sometimes have issues with how they think they look, or are insecure about that little bit of leftover baby weight. But let me tell you without a shadow of a doubt, your husband couldn’t care less. When he looks at you, he sees the most beautiful woman he has ever seen. Please understand this. You are his vision of beauty. Weight doesn’t matter. Stretch marks don’t  matter. All that matters for him is the attitude you set forth when we tries to look at you in that way. He doesn’t want/need you to change anything before you “look good enough”. He’s totally happy with how you look now. Your husband is totally in love with the woman he married, and that is all he’s thinking about when he looks at you. (ok, so maybe a few other thoughts I can’t type out on a blog, but mostly that). When you show him that you not only “put up” with him looking at you in this way, but LIKE, and even ENCOURAGE it, you will have thought you had just given him the world. I guess, Because in a small way, you just did.

“You’re going to do WHAT, WHERE?!” – (Vasectomy questions answered)

man-holding-his-hands-out-in-fear-screaming

First, a disclaimer: I know there are a lot of views on the subject of birth control. The point of this post is NOT to argue these views one way or another. The point of this post is to INFORM you on what you might encounter if you have decided to have this procedure done. I don’t want to hear why you feel it’s wrong, or right, or upside down, because frankly, I don’t care. In our case, due to some health issues in my wife, and a few other reasons I’d rather not share, we decided it was the best route for us.

“I can’t believe your going to blog about that” said my wife when I told her what I was writing about today. Well, I’m actually a little surprised myself, but here I am, writing about getting snipped. Maybe I’m drawn to subjects that normally don’t get written about, leaving a huge void of information on how to deal with/what to expect when you go through them. Maybe that’s why I blogged about our miscarriage. I guess I just figure that if I went through it, and had to learn some things the hard way, why not share it with other husbands (even if it is a tough subject to just “bring up”) so you have some information to go into it with? Make sense? Ok, you’re still looking at me like I’m crazy, but whatever. Maybe at this point you want to navigate over to the Newsweek blog. But, if not, buckle up, ‘cus here goes…

In this post, I want to answer some of the hard (and strange) questions I had as a guy, going into this thing. Questions that you can’t really just ask off the cuff. It’s just a little strange to follow-up a “Man, the cowboys lost again huh?” with “So, how bad did you swell up after you got snipped?” Just seems a bit awkward. The following is a little bit of what I experienced/questions I had. Obviously you’re going to be a little different, but it should be at least close to what it’s going to be like for you. Also, if you have any questions (no matter how strange) that you’d like answered, just ask them below in the comments. I’d be glad to answer as honestly as possible.

“Where do you go to get it done?” -  Yeah, that’s what I asked. Is there some sort of “snip doctor”? No. Well, not exactly. You can have your family practitioner do it, but I don’t recommend it. (And neither does my sister, who is a General Practitioner) You want to look up the Urologist in your area. And do your homework on them too. Get reviews online, check with other guys that have had it done. This isn’t something you want botched, or being done by a “newbie” who “thinks he know’s how to do it”. The Doc I went to had done over 300 of them, so he had a VERY good idea of what he was doing.

“Why do they want me to come in for a consult first? – Most docs want to sit down and go over the procedure with you, and make sure you understand what you’re having done, the risks, etc. I was scared that they would try to talk me out of it, but instead I got a really good understanding of what exactly he was going to do, what to expect. It’s worth the extra time.

“How bad does it hurt during the procedure?” – I can honestly say that I didn’t feel ANY pain during the procedure. There were sometimes when I felt a “tightness” in my testicles when he was working down there, but no sharp pain. They will numb you up at the incision site, and then again inside where they are working, so you shouldn’t feel a thing. They also had me take 2 Valium and a Hydrocodone before I came in, so I was feeling pretty “good” (ok, I was higher than a kite) when I got there. Let’s just say that my wife can tell you some stories about how I was acting before/when I got there. The Valium totally relaxes you, and makes you not care about much of everything. Doc could have fired up a chainsaw in the operating room, and I would have been like “cool man, what’s that for?”

“How bad is the aftermath?” – The docs will tell you to go home, keep ice on it, and take pain meds as needed. In my case the after-pain was nonexistent until the meds started to wear off. Then I started to feel the pain. That being said, if I kept an ice pack on it, and kept up on my pain meds, it was very manageable. Another thing I did was wear TWO pairs of boxer brief underwear when I slept, and put the ice pack in between the two pairs. That way the pack wasn’t making direct contact with it, and they kept the ice pack there while I slept.

I took two and a half days off of work, and was back to work for 4 hours on that 3rd day. It really depends on your job though. They don’t want you to lift anything for about 10 days if at all possible. And believe me, you might think “oh come on, it can’t be that bad”, but let me tell you, I started to help my wife move some boxes of stuff into the garage that second day, and let’s just say I stopped as soon as I started. You don’t realize how much you use the muscles down there when you lift, until you have this done.

“How bad was the swelling?” - As long as you keep ice on it every few hours the first couple days, it’s not bad. Are they bigger than normal, yes, but it’s not like having a soccer ball down there. It’s not comfortable to cross your legs for at least a couple of weeks however.

“How long until you can have sex again?” – The doc I went to said “Oh, you’ll know when you’re ready”. I didn’t really know what he meant by that, but was too afraid to ask. There turned out to be a lot of wisdom in it though. Basically, the first 4 or 5 days, the thought of sex just sounds painful. Like kick you in the crotch painful. But at about the 6 or 7 day mark, it sounds a little better, and for most you should be “back in the saddle” (sorry, bad pun) by around the  7-10 day mark. Each procedure is different and some docs will ask you to wait more or less, but for most, it will be about a week before you start to enjoy it again.

“Does sex feel the same as it did before?” – For the most part, yes. Let me explain. At first orgasm felt a little “different” then it did before. Almost as if there was less of a “full release” than pre vasectomy. Most of it was probably just in my head, but it just felt a little different, but not in a “less pleasurable” way. Now, 2 months post-op, I can’t tell a difference in feeling at all. If anything, it feels a little better, not worse.

“Other strange sex related questions” -

“Is there as much ejaculate as before?” Since sperm only makes up about 5% of the ejaculate, the scientific answer to that question would be no. Can you tell just by looking at it? Not in a million years.

“Does the ejaculate look different from before?” No, not at all.

“Will my wife desire me less?” Yes, us guys like to play these silly head games. As a man, there is something about being able to get our wives pregnant that gives us a sense of “manhood”. To our wives however,  it can actually be a stress, not a turn-on, if pregnancy isn’t desired at the time. So, the answer to this question is no. If anything (and I’ve heard this from several guys who have had this done), it let’s the wife enjoy the encounter MORE, since there is no fear of pregnancy sitting in the back of her head.

“Is there any pain after total recovery?” - Like I said, I’m only 2 months post op, but the only pain I have is an occasional “ache” (similar to the “blue balls” feeling) in my testicles, and I do notice that I’m a bit more sensitive to accidental hits/knocks there by random misplaced knee from the kiddos, etc. I’m told that most of this will also go away over time.

“Can you still see the incision after it’s all healed?”  – No, not at all. Even my wife couldn’t find it. My doc used the stitches that dissolve, so other than a small, harder spot where the stitches were, you can’t tell at all.

“How long until you can have unprotected sex after the procedure?” - They want you to wait 6 weeks, or 12 ejaculations, whichever comes first. Then they have you bring in a sperm sample to the office, so they can test for any remaining sperm. If there aren’t any, you’re good to go. If there are, they have you bring in a sample every week, until there are none.

Random things you need to know:

- Take the drugs they give you before you go in for the procedure. Don’t try to be the “manly man”. Just take them. They know what they’re doing.

- If you wear boxers normally, go buy some boxer briefs, or regular briefs. You will need at least 6 pairs. 10 would be better. Remember, you will be doubling up for the first few days. The goal is to have underwear that is supportive, without being TOO tight.

- Resist the temptation to “see if it still works” too soon after post-op. There was a guy I know about who did that after the first day, and let’s just say it turned all kinds of pretty shades of purple. Yeah, BAD idea.

- Buy some ice packs. You want them to be about 4 inches wide by 5 or 6 inches long, and you want the ones that stay pliable even while frozen/cold. You can find them on Amazon, or any drug store. Have at least 2, so you can keep trading them out.

- DO NOT try to go back to wearing boxers less than one month out from surgery. Don’t ask me how I know this, but while you may think you’re fine, by the end of the day you will NOT be fine. Too much movement = bad.

- Remember the “ice pack between two pairs of underwear” trick that I talked about above. Works GREAT.

- Do NOT try to do ANY lifting before the 10 days are up. And even then, be careful! Like I said, you wouldn’t think it would affect that area, but it does. Anything over 10 lbs, don’t do it.

To sum it up – Was it worth it?

Here’s the deal guys. Was it fun to go through all the “stuff” I described above? The ice packs, the pain meds, the surgery, the awkwardness? No. Is it worth it to be able to have worry free sex with my wife anytime we want, without having to worry about if we have a condom, what time of the month it is,  where her cycle is, if she’s ovulating, etc, etc, etc? Totally.  I have, and will always, hate condoms, and I will never regret the day I got to throw them all away. :)

Is it the right thing for your marriage? Sorry, I can’t tell you that. Pray about it, have a long hard talk with your wife, and look at things in a “down the road” kind of way. If you’re 25, have 1 child, and might want more later, probably not a good call. If you’re 32, have 4 kids, and feel like the Lord may want you to adopt later, instead of having any more of your own, it might be a good option for you.

Whatever you decide, my hope is that this post gives you some real answers about what to expect, and how it’s going to affect you physically. Beyond that, is up to you.

How about you? Have any tips/questions to add? 

Walls; Easier to build, than to tear down.

Sad-Kids-Leaning-Against-Wall

We took our family to the Oregon Coast this Summer, for our yearly trip to the beach. There’s just something about the raw power of the ocean, and the crisp salt air, that makes us look forward to coming back every year.

As I do every year, I helped the kiddos build a giant sand castle, complete with walls, and a gate, and a moat – all designed to “beat the ocean” and keep the sand castle from melting into the sand again. When the water would come in, we’d build the walls bigger again – knowing it was futile, but wanting to “save the castle!”.

Why am I telling you this? Well, because I’ve been thinking a lot lately about walls. Now in the example of the sand castle, keeping the  walls UP is a good thing. In my marriage, the goal is to keep them down.

It’s a strange concept though. Keeping your walls down. We’re trained from childhood that we need to “protect ourselves”, and “if you put yourself out there, you’ll get stomped on”. Then we get into marriage – a relationship that is supposed to be the most intimate relationship you will ever have on earth – and we still try to be “just vulnerable enough”, so that we feel connected, but also protected enough, that if our spouse does something to hurt us, we can pull back into our walls and tell ourselves “see, that’s why I need to keep them up”.

But how do we ever truly “know” our spouse, if we refuse to become vulnerable? For example, say your wife makes a comment that could be taken wrong, like “you want sex again!?” Or “You never spend time with me.” At that point we have two options. We can put a few bricks on the wall that will eventually separate us, or was can look past the cut of the words, to what is probably causing it, and respond in love.

It can even be little things that we pick up during the day. The things that are so trivial, it’s hard to believe we even register them, but are mentally adding bricks to the wall between us. Brick, by brick, by brick. And we wonder why, after about a week of this (or longer), that we feel disconnected. Huh, maybe it’s that 6 foot high wall between you. Yeah, the one that we refuse to look at because “well, it’s mostly her fault anyway”. Yeah. Sure it is.

So I’ve been making it my mission lately to be a “wall watcher” in my marriage. To be on the lookout for little things that if left alone, will hinder the intimacy between my wife and I.

If a remark is made, and I feel my “what did she mean by that?!” reaction come up, instead of clunking another brick on the pile, I say “hey hon, I don’t think I took that like you meant it. Is there something you need, that I’m not doing? If so, I want to hear about it.” Don’t jump right to being on the defensive.

Walls can be a good thing, or a bad thing. You want to build a wall AROUND your marriage, NOT in BETWEEN the two people in it.

Husbands: Ten Ways to Show Your Wife You Love Her

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Ok MEN, it’s your turn on the old “ten things” list. And no, most of these don’t involve sex, sorry to disappoint. ;)

As with all of these type of lists, make sure you don’t take them at face value. This is simply a way to give you a few ideas, that you can tailor to your wife’s likes/dislikes.

Ready? Here goes -

1. Hold her hand for no reason. Yeah, that means not just when you’re thinking of her without her clothes on. Remember the thrill that holding hands gave you when you were dating? Well, our wives STILL love it when we reach over and hold their hand. It shows her that no matter how busy/crazy life is/will be, you’re still in love with HER.

2. Look her in the eye and tell her she’s beautiful. Notice I said look her in the EYE? In other words, not while you’re looking at her boobs. Our wives need you hear they are beautiful from US. Not from the kids, not from their girlfriends, not from her mom,  but from US. They might not say it, but they have thoughts like “I wonder if he still thinks I’m pretty?” quite a bit. Make SURE you let her know she’s still a “10″ in your eyes.

3. Do things around the house that you may not think are in your “job description”. Don’t give me “Oh, I don’t like changing diapers”, or “I’m tired after a long day at work, I don’t want to help with dishes”.  As my mom used to tell us kids, “what, is your arm broken?” when we’d say we didn’t want to pitch in with the household stuff. It doesn’t matter if your wife stays home with the kids, or works out of the home – most times she’s exhausted by the time dinner comes around, so surprise her with a “hey babe, I’ll get the dishes tonight, why don’t you go sit on the deck and read that book you’ve been wanting to catch up on?” After she picks herself up off the floor, you’ll be amazed at how fast she’ll disappear. Sure it’s not fun, but man up. She’ll love you all the more for it.

4. Leave her sweet little notes – I can hear you groaning from here. Ok, it doesn’t have to be anything Shakespearean. Just a quick “I love more than anything”, or “Thanks for everything you do, I love you!”. It does much more than you may think when our wives find those notes from us. It shows them we are thinking about them, and that’s HUGE to them.

5. Make sure sex is good for HER also - Ok, so there’s one about sex. But it’s not about you. I hear so many wives complaining about how their husbands want sex all the time, but have no interest in making/learning how to make it better for THEM. Come on guys! This isn’t what we’re going for! Get rid of the attitude that “sex is mostly for the guy” and start learning about HER body, and how to make HER feel good. Be a student of your wife’s body. How she likes to be touched, what turns HER on, etc. Don’t always be so concerned about what YOU get out of it. Remember, marriage is about giving, and your marriage bed is a huge part of that.

5. Tell her you LOVE her – A LOT – “Oh come on, every guy does that! I say it all the time!” Yeah, you’d think this would be a no brainer, but it is a lot harder than we may think. As guys we may THINK we say it all the time, but I challenge you to count how many times you’ve said it today. Once? Maybe when you called on your lunch break? Yeah, our wives have a constant need to be reassured that we love them. It may seem strange to us guys, but it’s true. You can’t tell your wife you love her “too much”, but you can very easily say it “too little”.

6. Date her - No, that trip through the drive through with the kids last night was not a date. She wants you to pursue her, just like you did BEFORE you said “I do”. Plan nights out for just the two of you. Doesn’t have to be expensive, just as long as it’s you two spending time together. Could be a romantic dinner out. Could be something as simple as a walk by the lake, or in the park. What matters is that YOU planned it, and YOU took the time to be with HER and put everything else aside for a couple of hours. TIME MATTERS to our wives.

7. Make time to LISTEN to her - Yes, this involves turning off ESPN for a little while. Here’s the deal – your wife wants to feel important to you. If you are always listening to her talk with one eye on the top 10 plays, she’s not feeling like she’s very important. INVEST the time to sit down every couple of days with your wife, turn off the TV, put the cell phone away, sit down face to face, and say “Ok hon, I’m all yours. What’s going on in your world lately?” Resist the urge to solve problems, and instead empathize with her, listen to her, and make her feel like you actually care about her day. May seem simple, but this is SO important to our wives feeling loved and understood.

8. Surprise her with little gifts – Have you ever been walking through a store with your wife and she going on about something that she’d “love to have” someday? I know, most times you’re only half listening, because you’re also walking past the electronics department at the time, but try to REMEMBER those little things she mentions. The vase that she thought would look good on the table by the door. The necklace she stopped to admire. It could be anything! Some time when she’s not expecting it (in other words, not a birthday, or Christmas), buy it for her, and surprise her with it! You get a double bonus from this one – one for surprising her with something she wanted, and another for actually remembering she mentioned it, and following through.

9. Give her time to do things WITHOUT you or the kids - I go over this more in-depth in my post “Kick your wife out of the house”, but to sum it up, we need to remember that our wives need time to get away for a little while and clear their heads/relax. You try taking care of 2 or 3 needy, crying, energetic kids for 10 hours or so, and see how you feel at the end of it. When you get home from work and see that “I’m about to pull my hair out and curl up in a fetal position” look, have the decency to say “hey hon, do you want to head down to Starbucks for couple hours tonight after dinner? Just to “reset” a little?” Not only will she come back a lot calmer, but also refreshed, and ready to face another day and be the wife/mother she wants to be. Don’t see the warning signs, and go “oh well, I don’t get a break, why should she?”. Make sure your wife is getting time to herself. You’ll notice a BIG difference in almost every category.

10. Kiss her for no reason – In other words, kiss her out of the blue, and not just when you want it to lead somewhere. Maybe it’s right in the middle of doing dishes, or as you walk by her in passing. There nothing like laying one on your wife when she’s least expecting it. After the “what was that for?”, you be able to say “oh, just because you’re beautiful, and I couldn’t resist”. Watch her eyes light up!

So there you have it! Ten things you can do for your wife, that will show her how much you still love/care for her. What are some ways you’ve found show you care/love your wife?

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