Assuming you married a decent man, this is what he really wants from you and your relationship.
Let’s assume you married a decent man. If not, then you should read a different article because I am not going to talk about those kinds of situations, I prefer to leave that topic to marriage therapists, or maybe divorce lawyers.
If your husband is a man worth staying married to, there are certain elements that he wants in his marriage that you should be aware of and some of these might even surprise you. It is very important that you understand what your husband is looking for in a relationship if you really want to have a lasting marriage.
Here are seven aspects that your husband really wants to exist in his marriage and in which you can help him.
He wants to be your hero
This may sound old-fashioned, and maybe it is, but what every decent man wants more than anything is for his wife to admire him. You are the most important person in the world to him. Therefore, your approval means more to him than anyone else’s.
It is true that even the best of men do not always behave admirably. But if you’re willing to overlook occasional mistakes and consistently treat your husband like the good man she is at heart, she’ll be much more likely to act at that point more often. (If your mistakes are more than occasional, see the first paragraph.)
Learn from the best elementary school teachers who understand the importance of positive reinforcement. Children who are treated like smart people are more likely to act smart. As you have long suspected, your husband is really a big boy. Tell him often how much you admire him. Most likely, he will try to behave admirably.
He wants to be your lover
I know what you’re thinking: “Aha, I already knew they were going to date something about sex on this list!” Well, of course your husband wants an intimate relationship with you. For company he already has his dog and his soccer friends. His relationship with you is something different.
What your husband really wants is someone he can be intimate with without having to worry about being rejected. He wants to hold your hands in the car and snuggle up on the couch. He wants to kiss you regularly and sometimes passionately. She wants to whisper things in your ear while you do the dishes, hear you laugh, and see you wink in response.
In short, he wants a lover who is his only – and in return, he will be all yours. And yes, sometimes this holding hands, snuggling, kissing, and whispering things to each other will lead to sex.
He wants to be your best friend
It is common today to see wedding invitations that say, “Today I am marrying my best friend.” That’s a good thing I guess, but I wonder if it’s not one of those cute phrases that people put out without fully realizing what it means.
Because once you get married, you will really be best friends with each other – or else you will not be friends at all. There is not much chance of being half friends. You will be spending so much time together and getting to know each other in such an intimate way that a strong friendship is necessary if you want your relationship to last. That means having respect, genuine affection, and a willingness to overlook the other’s faults.
As a good man, your husband loves that you have friends. But he wants to be your best friend, with whom you share everything, your confidant, the person with whom you prefer to spend time more than with anyone in the world. If you are that kind of friend to him, he will be that kind of friend to you.
He wants to understand you
It’s a joke in our culture to talk about how little men know about women – and it probably happens in all cultures since the beginning of time. I bet Eve left Adam scratching his head regularly.
Yet despite the seeming futility of the effort, your husband desperately wants to understand why you do what you do, what you mean when you say certain things, what makes you angry. If he is a decent man and a good husband, he has vowed to spend his life doing exactly this.
So please help him understand. When you think something is important, but he doesn’t see it that way, take the time to explain your reasons. Then listen respectfully, with an open mind, to their perspective. Above all, tell him what you want. Don’t expect him to read your mind. It is written in a language he does not know.
He wants to protect you
It is true that we no longer live in a time when women and children are at risk of being eaten by wild animals or abducted by a war between tribes. Yet every decent man has a deep-seated instinct to protect his family – from whatever danger our modern society presents.
Sometimes this need to protect yourself will seem like a negative thing. For example, your husband may not share important financial information with you because he “doesn’t want you to worry.” Or you can get jealous if you notice that some Romeo had an eye on you. At times like these, you may have to help him understand that you are a grown woman, perfectly capable of handling these types of situations.
Remember to be courteous. What is driving him to act like this is not selfishness but a concern for your safety. Would you rather be with someone who just doesn’t care about you?
He wants to make you happy
The number one priority for every decent man is the happiness of his wife. If the love of his life is not happy, he feels that he has failed. It’s as simple as that.
Of course, you know that he is not necessarily responsible for your happiness. Sometimes, you are going to be unhappy, and most of the time it has nothing to do with your husband. But he might have a hard time believing that. As far as he’s concerned, your happiness is his responsibility, and he will take that responsibility very seriously.
Try to help him understand that just because you are not happy at the moment does not mean that you are not happy in general, or just because you are upset about the circumstances does not mean that you are upset with him. Be patient with him as he tries to understand this. She’s probably going to keep doing things to make you feel better, whether you want it or not.
He wants to be himself
There is an old saying that a man marries a woman believing that she will never change, while a woman marries a man believing that she will change him – and they are both wrong.
It is certainly true that a good marriage changes both of you for the better. At the same time, there is nothing more damaging to a man’s mind than the realization that his wife really does not like the way he is and that she is willing to do everything possible to change him and adapt him to how she wants.
Your husband needs to know that you love him, even with all his flaws. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to improve in your life. In fact, you are more likely to make positive changes in your life if you feel accepted by the woman you love. Remember, you already knew who you were marrying – a truly decent man, but not without his flaws, just like the rest of us.
Once you understand what your husband really wants, not only will you be happier, but you can also make him happier and you will reap the rewards of a stronger relationship. Because ultimately the only behavior or attitude you can really change is your own.
_Translated and adapted by Miriam Aguirre from Rob Jenkins’ article What your husband really wants.