How Husband Feels When Wife Puts Children Ahead of Him

wife puts children ahead of husband - Adobe StockHow does it make a man feel when his wife puts their children ahead of him? We posed that question to a group of men. Their most common answers are listed below:

1. Insignificant and disrespected

Most replied that they felt a deep lack of respect from not only their wives, but from their children. “Respect is important to a man, and he doesn’t feel that when the children consistently come first,” said one man.

2. Unloved

Most men, unlike most women, associate love with actions instead of with feelings. When a woman places her children above her husband, her actions say to him that she loves the children more than she loves him. Though not as vocal about it as women, men desire to be deeply loved by their wives. It is difficult for a man to see his wife cherish the children, but treat him in a cool or casual manner.

3. Lonely

One of the man’s greatest needs is companionship, and he usually expects to find this in his relationship with his wife. “As my wife pours more and more of her life into being a mother, she pours less and less of it into being my wife,” said one man. “The friend I once had in my wife is now a friend to our children, but a stranger to me.” The lonelier a man becomes, the more vulnerable he is to outside temptation. Is your husband lonely because of the time you spend with your children? Are you in any way making him more vulnerable to the attentions of other women?

4. Unappreciated

Men appreciate being appreciated! Many men feel that their wives show greater appreciation to their children than they do to them. “If our daughter goes to a friend’s for the night, my wife misses her terribly,” said one husband. “When she comes home the next morning, my wife is ecstatic to see her and acts as if she’s been gone forever. I can be gone for days on a business trip, and my wife acts like I never left. Sometimes she even seems to resent my return home.” Does your husband know how important he is to you and how much you value him? Are you an appreciative wife?

5. Resentful and Angry

Though not a majority, some men stated that when their wives put their children first, they felt a sense of resentment and anger; some felt this way toward their children, others toward their wives. “My fifteen-year-old son walks through the door and my wife immediately asks abut his day or rubs his back if he’s tired. She pampers him constantly. I find myself resenting him, even though I know it isn’t his fault.” Is your husband frustrated or even jealous of your relationship with your children? Could it be that he feels left out or overlooked?

IDEAS TO CONSIDER:

Maybe you’re sensing that you need a major overhaul in this area, or perhaps just some fine-tuning. Regardless, here are some ideas to consider:

1. Think positive thoughts.

For every positive thought you have of your children, think of two for your husband. Begin noticing the many things he does. Perhaps he sees to it that the house is locked up every night or helps you replace light bulbs. Men enjoy praise!

2. Give him the benefit of the doubt.

Often this comes easily with our children, but is more difficult with our husbands. Grant him the same gracious generosity that you so readily give your kids.

3. Be spontaneous.

Surprise him once a week with a random act of kindness. One woman recently discovered that her husband liked a slushy drink from a local convenience store. She began buying them for him. “He loves it when I do this. It’s such a simple thing to do, and lets him know I’m thinking about him.”

4. Invest in his stock.

Share with your children things you admire about their father. This lets them see how important your marriage is to you. Though it’s been said dozens of times, the way Mom sees Dad is the greatest influencer of how the children see him. Do this with others as well. Many women excel at communicating their children’s strengths, but not their husband’s.

One woman pointed out that often friends will talk about their children in glowing terms, but when they talk about their husbands, they tend to talk about their weaknesses and inabilities. If you do this, stop! Commit to sharing with others only those things that build your husband up. Words are infectious and should be chosen wisely.

5. Make your bedroom a haven.

Too often this is the catchall room. Make an effort to keep it clean, organized, and inviting. One woman bought a small love seat and placed it in the master bedroom. This is where she and her husband spend a few moments together once they’ve gotten in the door at the end of the day. It shows their children that they value each other’s company as well. Burn a fragrant candle so that the room smells inviting and warm.

6. Cater to his quirks.

Many times we think our children’s quirks are cute but our husband’s are obnoxious. One woman discovered that her husband liked his sheets changed often, yet she preferred going longer between changings. “I fought this for years,” she said. “I thought he was being too obsessive. One day my daughter asked why I ignored her father’s request for clean sheets but always changed hers whenever she asked. I was shocked. This was something I didn’t even realize I was doing. I suddenly saw that I was not only dismissing one of my husband’s rare requests, but I was also modeling wrong priorities for my daughter.”

7. Check your attitude.

Said one woman, “I was stunned one night when my husband told me that he wished I had the same attitude toward him that I had toward the kids. From his perspective, I bent over backward for them. I ran all over town to find my daughter the right dress or my son the right tennis shoes. But he said that if he asked me to stop at the hardware store and pick up a gallon of paint, I balked.” Our attitudes speak volumes to our husbands.

8. Pray for your husband.

This tip could go in every chapter. There is nothing like prayer to soften your heart and sharpen your focus.

9. Reintroduce pet names into your relationship.

Refrain from calling him “Dad” or Daddy.” Choose instead to call him by a name that shows your love and high regard for him as a husband.

Your husband may or may not respond as you re-prioritize your relationships. It really isn’t an issue, though, if you are doing it to honor God. Certainly it’s nice for him to notice and appreciate your efforts, but it isn’t necessary. God notices.

This article comes from the book, The Politically Incorrect Wife: God’s Plan for Marriage Still Works Today, written by Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby, published by Multnomah. This is a real down-to-earth book which is both inspiring yet practical. It gives the reader to have a clearer understanding of God’s design for the married woman. The authors explain how, between the both of them, they bought into more than 40 years of modern day thinking. Eventually they realized how it was sabotaging their marital relationships.

Excerpted from The Politically Incorrect Wife © 2000-2002 by Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby. Used by permission of Multnomah Publishers, Inc. Excerpt may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of Multnomah Publishers, Inc.

— ADDITIONALLY —

We strongly recommend that you read the following linked article, written by Gary Thomas. Gary brings up some issues, related to this one, that you may never have thought of previously. Please read:

THE DANGER (TO OUR KIDS) OF A DISTANT MARRIAGE

Print Post

Filed under: Childrens Effect on Marriage For Married Women

Join the Discussion

Please observe the following guidelines:

  • Try to be as positive as possible when you make a comment.
  • If there is name-calling, or profane language, it will be deleted.
  • The same goes with hurtful comments targeted at belittling others; we won't post them.
  • Recommendations for people to divorce will be edited out–that's a decision between them and God, not us.
  • If you have a criticism, please make it constructive.
  • Be mindful that this is an international ministry where cultural differences need to be considered.
  • Please honor the fact this is a Christ-centered web site.

We review all comments before posting them to reduce spam and offensive content.

Comments

546 responses to “How Husband Feels When Wife Puts Children Ahead of Him

  1. This has happened to me on numerous occasions, my wife puts the kids and grandkids in front of me, belittles me in front of the kids.

    1. Sorry, it happens to a lot of us. Best thing to do is not fight it. Makes it worse. Play with the grands & spend time with children. Also, find a good hobby like golf, cycling, yard selling, etc.

  2. What about a wife who lies to the kids to make her look good and him look bad; and do doctors have a name for wives who avoid husband when children come to the point of slandering him to the children?

  3. Thank you. You’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head with your steps to showing a husband that he is indeed appreciated and just as loved as all others in a wife’s life. These same rules of thumb also hold true with her friends or outside interests. A MAN LOVES TO HOLD THAT SPECIAL PLACE WITHIN HER HEART AND LIFE AS ANYONE/THING ELSE SHE TREASURES. We may even need it more because we too can sometimes feel insecure in where we stand. Though we don’t always show these same considerations to our wife and children…we most certainly do feel them. Perhaps more of us Husbands should do the same.

  4. My wife and I dated 5 years, never lived together and did not sleep together. She had two daughters, one 7 years old and one 10. We only dated once a week and kept the relationship secret so as not to disrupt her girls and my daughter. The worst thing one can do is introduce new people in the children’s lives only to have the relationship not work. Breaking bonds is a terrible thing on a child. A year and a half later things between her and I progressed nicely and we let our daughters in on our secret. Everyone was happy and I was able to enter the house when they were home and we could do things together like amusement parks, swimming, walks and movies…(the girls and the two of us.) We all got along incredibly well. I was so happy as my previous marriage was never any good; no affection, no respect, argumentative. This relationship was so good that I had to look down to see cloud 9.

    Four years into it I suffered massive heart attack at the gym and by the Grace of God I survived and recovered. I then said to her after this serious scare, that we were wasting time and I wanted to commit and grow with her and the girls as a family. She agreed and as we were both Christians we felt the next thing to do was to marry. We did and I was the happiest man on the planet. A beautiful woman with an incredible intellect and engineer yet pre-school teacher as she loved the children. She really makes a difference for them. Two months before the wedding she began to have hot flashes and migraines. Menopause had kicked in. No worries, we can handle that, I thought. Being we never had intercourse while dating we finally could love one another in a marital way. Menopause was definitely upon her. No problem, we consummated the marriage and began our lives together.

    I was Incredibly happy as were her girls and parents. Her previous marriage some 20 plus years before had been very turbulent for her after about 5 years of marriage. He would belittle her, demean her, physically accost her, separate her from her parents and steal proprietary knowledge from her parents. She became a Christian after that marriage and had been wonderful. Two months into our marriage, her libido was gone. We were only intimate twice yet I didn’t care, as she was always so affectionate, holding hands, hugging and kissing. I never had that with my first wife and I was 100% happy. Near the end of the first year of marriage, kisses were non existent, no longer were hands held and no hugs given…Unreal! I thought, at least she’s not having mood swings and angry. I loved her (still do); she refused to seek treatment or HRT even telling me she went to the Docs and was told the treatment doesn’t work. She lied, no Dr. says that about HRT until it is tried. The second year was still fun and we were happy. Zero affection, no more kisses, even a kiss goodbye. Third year I began finalizing my studies on menopause and was seeing some severe symptoms: massive migraines, extreme weight gain, distance and a refusal to do what we had always promised to do and did…Talk. Communicate!

    Getting to the point, I had asked her for nearly 7 months why the girls moreover the one was always answering me in a intellectual sarcastic tone. She tells me because I have to do more things with them!?? I said, okay what should I do? She told me it was on me? In the 8 years we were together and the 3 living under the same roof things changed…they went from 13 to 16 and 16 to 19. Their interests change and they have friends, boyfriends and different interests. I needed some help from their mother and I asked yet received nothing. I have texts to prove it going back a year.

    The eldest daughter is a nice friendly person until she does not get her way, then she turns into her angry father. She would lay her mum out nose to nose over things so foolish and immature it was frightening. I never said a words, they weren’t my children. I always heard the verbal wars yet never saw them up close as I remained upstairs. Then one night I was in the living room and I was going to help the eldest check a car out in New York as there aren’t many used ones like she wanted in PA. I’m a car dealer and was happy to help. The eldest had her laptop and I had my phone for all the apps and market reports as well as condition reports. She sent me the one she wanted me to check on so I pulled it up and was reading the options and noticed it was rear wheel drive, I didn’t realize that newer model was rear wheel drive. I said to her, “hey that’s rear wheel drive.” She said, “yeah I know” so I asked “what are you going to do in the winter?” She said she wouldn’t be here. So I said “cool where ya going?” She said, she’s moving to N. Carolina and she has plans. The previous 6 months she had been moving to Tennesse, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, Mississippi and her mum and I would always chuckle as she never has a bona fide plan. So I said in an audible voice under my breath, “okay we’ll talk about it next December when you’re stuck in the driveway and can’t get out.”

    She stood up, flipped out on me and started yelling. I said, “hey, hey, come back. I was just joking. Come back. Don’t act like a baby and get back here.” She tore off down the hall to her mum crying and yelling and her mum (my wife) came out and said I can’t take this. I said. “what?” She say her daughter told her I called her a baby. Really? I said not, I said don’t act like a baby. No sooner did I say that the daughter came straight for me with the wicked face she shows her mother and pointing at me saying in a loud tone “how dare you!” I have heard her do that to her mum many a times. I stood straight up pointed directly back to her and in a strong tone of voice without yelling and said, “you don’t speak to me like that, I am a 50 year old man and you don’t do that to me, your mother lets you that but I don’t.” She proceeded to run down the hall to her mother crying, screaming, throwing herself on the floor pounding it and screaming. SHE’S 19 people!! I never saw that before. I ended up leaving to get away from a crazy situation.

    Long story short, the next day in the afternoon I received a break-up text from her mum–my wife stating that she changed the combination on the front door and “so that the girls feel safe” she added a padlock to the inside door in the garage. C and A are important to her. We never had an argument in the 8 years together! She said I don’t mesh with the girls and she ended the marriage like that? She never called a family meeting to talk it over and talk it out. Just a BAM!! I met her 4 days later and tried to work it out; in the conversation she said in the 3 years we’ve lived under the same roof, the relationship between the girls and I did not increase??? Really? I have been asking for 7 months or more and received no help from my partner in life, my wife. Then she said if she remained with me she runs the risk of not being able to see her grandkids!?? The girls are 16 and 19! What grandikds?

    Menopause and a 19 year old on paper but a 5 year old in actions. So what do you think of that? She locked me out and left me, her Christian husband, for unknown future grandchildren. As if we could not have talked it out when I tried to do so for nearly 7 or 8 months. I have the messages to prove it. My life is rocked yet again. I am tired of hurting. Now I am black balled by her entire family and I did nothing but leave an uncomfortable scene. That’s how some women do wrong for the kids. I am devastate that my wife who loved me so much and stopped touching me at all the 2nd year into marriage due to her untreated menopause literally kicked me to the curb at a very low point in my life. Google “will my marriage survive menopause?; menopause ruined my life, and more”… read the comments from men and some women trying to help men.

    1. (1 month old) ouch, you have a tough one. All of us guys who have been married for a while have their spouses go through menopause. Its a long-rocky-roller-coaster-deep freeze-always too hot ride. My wife started HRT, anti-depressant, she is much better. Give them space, no contact, see what happens.

    2. Kory, I completely understand your situation as much as a human can without having actually been there while it was going on because I went through almost verbatim. The same exact steps/phases/thing with my wife. If you ever need someone to talk to please please reply here and we can communicate. I know you don’t know me from Adam but I am a Christian and again I’ve been there where you are right now.

  5. I have two girls ages 12 and 14 and my fiancé has an 11 year old son. His son is with us about 40% of the time and my girls are with me about 80%. He is constantly criticizing how I parent saying I do too much for them and don’t tell them no etc…when his son is with us he is treated like a guest and everything he wants he gets. I don’t criticize or resent except for when he starts in on my girls and he says “here we go….” and says I’m not allowed to compare. Help?!?!

    1. Its your children, and his son. He doesn’t really want to share you too much. Which is not necessarily a fault but he wants time and attention from his woman. It does cause issues. We do have to raise our children. Want them to know things, eventually have their own lives. You do need to set apart time for him, but he also needs to know that you have your own children to raise. Also, he is not their dad, but does need to be a good male figure with them. That is the responsibility of marrying someone with children. Finally, he needs to be friends with them., look for a few common things with them so he can communicate with them,