Accepting your husband as he is, as in, right now, is so so important in having peace and intimacy in marriage!
Ways to accept him as he is:
- appreciate his efforts by saying thank you whenever he does something for you
- forgive his mistakes
- appreciate his hard work to provide for you
- allow him all the time alone that he needs without getting upset that he needs time alone
- do not expect him to want to talk like he is a woman
- don’t criticize his ideas
- don’t criticize his decisions
- don’t criticize his appearance
- don’t criticize his hygiene habits
- don’t expect him to be affectionate 24/7 but appreciate whatever affection he DOES give you
- understand his history and accept whatever might have contributed to the way he is right now, and don’t expect him to be different than what he is right now
- accept his hobbies and give him time and space to enjoy them apart from you
- understand where he comes from (if a different state/culture) and appreciate the differences in food, tradition, etc.
- accept that he is a sinner, too, and that he needs grace just as much as we do
- when he looks upset, don’t ask him what’s wrong, understanding that the reason he is being so quiet is because he does not want to talk at that moment
- never question anything he says/does
- do not follow him if he walks away from you, even if all you are trying to do is show him you care by asking him “what’s wrong?”
- do not pressure or demand from him—ever
- take care of your own emotional well-being so that whenever you are around him, he always sees you happy and smiling without negativity and complaining
- don’t fantasize about the way you wish he WOULD be, but instead, focus on what he already is
Let’s say a husband is:
- sole financial provider for the family
- quiet (non-talkative)
- from a different culture
This is very general, but there are very specific ways that a wife can accept him as he is, just with this general information.
A wife can accept her husband as he is by:
- finding her emotional needs met by other girl friends/counselor so as to not burden her husband who is already stressed from working hard each day
- be genuinely happy when he comes home, with a servant heart towards her husband who worked hard all day
- say thank you to him for providing for the family
- never complain about anything he provides for, but instead, can say thank you for all he provides for
- not expect him to come home and meet her needs, realizing his way to show love and make the wife happy is by working hard all day and providing for the family by himself
- give him all the time and space he needs when he is home to recharge and refresh from working so hard
- not expect him to want to spend all his time off with her when he works all the time
- not bombard him with a lot of words and questions when he gets home or in general because he is not a big talker and appreciates silence
- not expect him to want to go out a lot or do things with a lot of people around since he is intro-verted and prefers time alone more than anything else
- realize what is respectful towards him and do that all the time so as to feed his need for respect
- accept that he is from a different culture by not expecting him to eat the same foods or enjoy the same foods as you do
The main point here is that focusing on what your husband isn’t doing, or focusing on things that he is NOT, rather than what he is and what he is already doing, is not going to create a peaceful atmosphere or marriage!
Accepting your man as he is has to do with realizing that he is different than you, and that his needs are totally different than yours. It is about having no expectations from him, and being thankful instead for what he does do. It is about NOT trying to change him at all. It is about finding the good things and focusing on them. It is about forgiving his mistakes and learning to trust in him and build him up to become the leader he is meant to be! It is about letting go of our own desires for the marriage and embracing God’s desire and design!
It is about appreciating your husband for the man he already is.
When a husband can successfully make his wife happy in ways he is wired to, like providing for her and the family, then he will more and more want to do things for her! If he feels like a failure in this area, he will more and more back out of the relationship until there is nothing left but a naggy, resentful, miserable wife!
Remember, YOU married him!
Why did we marry our husbands in the first place?
Was it because we wanted something for our own benefit?
Was it because we thought marriage was going to complete us?
Was it because we wanted to be taken care of?
Was it because we wanted a family/children?
Was it because we wanted to feel loved and wanted?
Was it because we wanted to be able to have intimacy?
If when we married our husbands, our motives were not according to God’s mind about marriage, then is it really any wonder when our marriages don’t turn out to be the magical disney movie we thought it would be?
We had expectations for our marriage, and when they didn’t happen, we started trying to make our husband/marriage be the way we wanted, in order to fulfill our expectations, and what happened was our husband went far away in shut-down mode, and we became so lonely and upset, and had no choice but to seek the Lord.
And now the Lord has us right where He wants us—– learning Christ, and seeing that marriage is not for US but for HIM and His purposes, and all the things we expected and wanted are not realistic!!! He is showing us that our marriage is a tool in His hand to conform us to the image of Christ if we belong to Christ, and that our marriage is to be a literal representation of Christ and His Church!!!! We as wives have the honorable position and calling of living out in our marriage the subjection of the Church to Christ as the Head! Learning to be in subjection to our husbands as the head of us is a GLORIOUS opportunity to be conformed to the image of CHRIST! Giving up all our own independence, mind, will, desires—- and following our husbands (not into any sin), to show the way of the Church to Christ is God’s idea for our marriages!
So I ask—why did you marry him in the first place? Surely there was something honorable about him, something desirable as a husband——- something to appreciate about him!
Believe me when I say, there are a million single women out there who would do anything to be married! Don’t take your marriage or husband for granted!
That is why I am so blessed because I got to see what it was like being a single mom for 5 years with no husband! So now that I am married, my marriage is not something I would easily give up! I don’t take it for granted! I am so thankful to be married!!!!!
A Heart Search
In all honesty, if your husband became what you think he should be like, will that really make your life better and solve all your problems in life?
Will that really bring you everlasting joy and happiness?
Will it really be the answer to all things in your life?
Some wives might say, well what about me?
Do I just give him everything he needs and forget about my own needs?
I would say yes, and no. Yes, because you can’t expect him to be/do something he is not. However, you don’t have to rely on him to meet all of your needs in life. We have Christ Jesus—we have our sisters in Christ—we have family, friends, our own hobbies! It is up to us to take care of our own emotional well-being in life. If our husbands are not talkative, then we can seek out girl friends and other outlets to get our talking needs met. In terms of affection, if he does not naturally do affectionate things, you can simply ask for what you need and leave it up to him to carry through. You can say, “Would you give me a hug?” My husband is not into affection, but he will never turn down a request for it from me because he loves me and does care about me, he is just not like me in that sense, and that’s ok!!!!!
I am testifying to the fact that when I accept my husband as he is right now, and don’t expect anything , and don’t criticize or question him at all, he is SO MUCH more willing to listen to me, talk to me, spend time with me, and do affectionate gestures than if I am miserable, naggy, resentful, and disrespectful! But this also took TIME to get to this place, with a lot of falling outs in between. I messed up and mess up a lot still. But I see the Lord truly leading me on to a larger measure of Christ where I am strengthened to not get upset or criticize anymore and not expect anything! And the peace and closeness that I have experienced now in my marriage is not worth giving up just to get my way anymore!
My husband had no father to show him the way, no good examples of marriage or anything. Yet he is responding the way ALL MEN generally will respond to appreciation and respect! Husbands WANT to make their wives happy! That is what they want. And when they are constantly being told that they are not loving us or talking to us enough or doing this or that enough—– they feel like a failure and they give UP! Men show love in ACTION, not words (usually). Don’t miss the ways your husband is trying to show you love and make you happy!!!!!
All we have to do is get over our unrealistic expectations, accept him as he is right now, appreciate what he DOES do, and watch and see if he doesn’t soften up towards you!!!!