What Your Husband Needs

Husband needs marriage put back together - Pixabay couple-254683_640

This article addresses some of the things a husband needs from his wife. In the “For Married Men” topic we address what a wife needs from her husband. Please prayerfully consider what is written here:

Years ago there was a television commercial for a certain brand of car wax. In it a woman was getting ready to sell her car, which looked weathered, old, and dull —so much so that most people wouldn’t give it a second look. The woman realized how dull her car looked, so she used this particular brand of car wax on it. Voila! Her car shone like it was brand-new. It looked so good, in fact, that the woman’s affections for it were revived and she decided to keep it.

We and our relationships are a lot like that.

When we treat someone as a valued gift and invest ourselves in his or her care, we build up that person’s feelings of self-worth and draw closer to them as well.

What a Husband Needs

When a wife respects, nurtures, and affirms her husband, it deepens her love for him. On the other hand, when we don’t regard something as valuable and neglect it, our feelings for it begin to wane. At the top of any man’s list of needs is respect from his mate. God created men that way. He needs respect as much from his wife as he needs air to breathe.

A man who doesn’t receive respect from his wife is a man who begins to wither on the inside. He’s all right as long as no one is standing on the air hose running to the tank labeled Respect.

That is exactly why God calls wives to respect their husbands (Ephesians 5:33).

Some believe that respect is something we all must earn. But just like love, respect from spouse to spouse must be unconditional. This is what Scripture teaches: “Show proper respect to everyone … not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.” (1 Peter 2:17-18)

I’ve seen numerous instances in which a wife began to believe in her husband and showed him respect. The husband, in turn, began to change-both in his own thinking and beliefs and in how he treated and responded to his wife.

Respect Husband?

How can a wife show respect for her husband? Here are just a few examples:

• Express faith in his decision and ability.

• Leave him notes (men respond better to the written word) that tell him how much you value who he is as a person (and sometimes for his work).

• If he botches a task at home, don’t sigh, roll your eyes, and mutter at him; instead, thank him for trying.

• Make positive suggestions without demanding an immediate answer. Ask him to reflect on it for a while.

• Listen to his upsets and don’t take his anger personally.

• Let him vent when he needs to.

• Encourage him in areas where he doesn’t feel secure and let him know you stand behind him.

• When he makes a decision you’re not in favor of, listen.

• Talk about his positive strengths in front of the children.

• Praise him at least once a day.

• Discover the uniqueness of his personality and learn to understand him and communicate better with him.

• Accept his maleness and celebrate the differences that come from this.

Ask yourself which of these you did this past month in an effort to show your husband respect. Then ask yourself how you’ll find ways to do these things in the coming month and beyond.

Example of Respect

Here’s a good example of a wife showing her husband respect, admiration, and love he needed from her:

One of the pastors I respected greatly was E.V. Hill, who served for many years as pastor of Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles. When E.V. first began in the ministry, he was a hard worker who wanted to provide for his wife, but he was also a young preacher who struggled to make enough money just to pay for the necessities.

Pastor Hill’s wife appreciated his efforts to protect and provide for her, even though some months there wasn’t enough money to pay all the bills. One night, he came home and noticed immediately that the house was dark. When he opened the door, he saw that his wife, Jane, had prepared a candlelight dinner. He loved the idea, but when he went to the bathroom to wash up, he flipped the light switch and nothing happened. Then he went to the bedroom and tried the lights. Again… there was nothing. The entire house was dark.

He went back and asked his wife why the lights didn’t work. Jane began to cry and said, “You work so hard, but it’s rough. I didn’t have enough money to pay the electric bill. I didn’t want you to know about it, so I thought we would just eat by candlelight!”

Love and Respect in Action

Dr. Hill described this experience with deep emotion: “My wife could have said, “I never had this happen in the home I was raised in.” But she didn’t berate or blame him. Instead she said, “Somehow we’ll get these lights back on, but tonight let’s eat by candlelight.”

Our calling to love and respect is a calling regardless of what the other person does. It’s sacrificial. It’s in the scriptures. It works!

This article comes from the book, One Marriage Under God: Building an Everlasting Love, written by H. Norman Wright, published by Multnomah. This is a book that will help you see things from God’s perspective, clarifying the institution of marriage as God originally created it—a beautiful committed, eternal bond. Dr Wright gives insights on: Whether you married the “right” or “wrong” person is entirely up to you… God has a good plan for every marriage … Your marriage needs to be re-created daily… The culture’s alternatives to marriage are destructive; God’s plan is flawless… The benefits of marriage are a carefully guarded secret… and “Me” or “We?”

— AND —

To help you figure out how to show respect to your husband, please read:

67 Ways to Make Him Feel Super Respected

— ALSO —

Yes, we realize that women need respect, as well. That’s another matter, which is covered in the “For Married Men” topic. But for wives, below is another article, written by Clayton and Charlie King. It is posted on the Crosswalk.com web site and it gives added insight into this topic which you may learn from as you read:


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46 responses to “What Your Husband Needs

  1. (NIGERIA)  I really thank you for this post. I’m a young lady who is near to getting married and I’ve always had this question on my mind “how can I show respect to my husband”? By virtue of my position in my family as the first child, I’ve been taking responsibilities and decisions practically for my siblings for most of my entire life and I’ve become so used to telling people what to do it has almost become second nature. I keep praying that this attitude of always being in charge and taking control will not be taken into marriage. I would truly love it if you can give more scriptural and practical ways in which a woman can totally and unconditionaly honour and respect her God-given husband and how I can be supportive of his decisions without questioning them. Thanks. May God bless you.

  2. (USA)  No, I respectfully disagree, if a man needs and wants respect then he must also give it in order to receive it back. I am a woman that has been treated very disrespectfully and he thought the result would be to treat him better. Well, I can tell you all and I don’t mind saying so, that I did treat my husband with the dignity and respect that he deserved and all I got was a big fat ZERO.

    So, I began to dislike him, and the more that he treated me disrespectfully the more I treated him the exact way that he treated me. There is something to be said for a man that expects everything for nothing. So, my number one rule is this: If he wants to get a withdraw, he needs to make a deposit, cause if he treats me badly he should never expect anything in return, much less love and respect. You have to show love to receive it, and that goes for pretty much everything in life. You can’t manipulate and play a person and expect anything good to prevail.

    I respect myself too much to allow people to walk all over me. I have let him walk all over me too long now, and now I say if a man is winning about love and respect, he should look in the mirror and ask what he can do to change that. After all, if he is to be the head of the household than he should lead by example and quit wynning and lying about it. He is the man and it is his responsibility to love and nurture his woman if he wants to be loved and nurtured. What did he do to capture your heart to begin with? Yeah, he showed you love and respect to acquire your affections, and it did do the job, well. After you marry, that is not where it ends, in fact that is just the beginning, and it has nothing to do with money, or gifts or any materialistic gestures. It is purely the love and wanting to interact and have fun and be with you that counts, and that is what creates a loving relationship that gives back in the same way. Two people loving and caring for each other and nurturing each other.

    So, it is each side giving the same respect to receive it back. This idea that the woman is to do all the giving is a load of crap and I have to respectfully disagree. I will not ever be the only one giving ever again. Try giving love to someone that chooses to love someone else and then wants you to stay in the marriage and accept the other woman. That is nothing more than a selfish individual that only sees himself and no other.

    Women are like flowers. They need love and nurturing from the men they are with in order to give back and when treated well, they or at least I know for myself, there is no telling how much love is returned. In my situation, I feel sorry for the man that I was with, cause he will never again have anyone that loved him as much as I. So, it is his loss, not mine, and I hope that he has a wonderful life with whom ever he is with and I hope that he is happy.

    But he does not have the strength or the ability to be truthful about his wrong doings and continues to lie about the events that lead up to this terrible split. He has blamed every woman he has ever been with, and it’s always the same thing, “they cheated.” For many years I have heard him cry about the mean women in his life and how mean they were. Well, come to find out, it has been him in fact that has been the offender and it is him that has manipulated and caused the very pain and confusion that he cries about. He is his worst enemy.

    His mother stood by and allowed him to abuse me. I have done nothing but loved him and helped him, but when I wanted to express my opinion, it is he that gets mad and angry and tries to make me out to be the bad one. When I yell in frustration he tapes me so that he can solidify the very lies he tells. He then uses whatever he can to cover up the affairs that he has had and the very unlawful things that he has done.

    So, when you say that we women need to respect our men, think about what a man needs to do to receive that love and respect first, cause chances are if you want anything in this life you usually have to initiate something first. Well, that is it for my two cents. If I have offended anyone with my response, all I can say is it is my opinion and I don’t know you so don’t take it personally and you should try to see something from another point of view. In other words “deal with it.” I do and I don’t put anyone down for theirs, but I will say before you marry make sure your needs are being met as well, and don’t be afraid to express yourself, because you only live once. Don’t live the way someone else wants you to live. You may find the right person if you live the way you see fit. Respect others and most of all respect yourself and you should live a fruitful life.

  3. (USA)  No one gets my respect until they give respect to me. And especially if the man in my life is treating me like crap. For all of you men out there, if you want respect than you need to give respect. Expecting respect just because you’re a man is sick and twisted. If you want my respect then you better show it. I am not a door mat, nor shall I listen to someone that is trying to push me into a life style that is all about men getting what they want and women getting stomped on and treated like crap. If you treat me bad you will receive nothing. If you treat me well I will reciprocate and return the love and respect that he has earned. Men need to get over themselves and get this. They are not the only living and breathing people in the world and beside every good man is a wonderful respectful and honest woman that deserves to be treated with respect. If men would get that then there would be no problems in this area. If I sound blunt then that is what it is, cause as far as I am concerned there has not been a man yet in my life that has been worth my love. Watch out cause when the right one comes along, I have been saving myself for that wonderful day. And when it happens, it will be bliss. I am not in this world to constantly serve a man without getting what I want in return. The world does not revolve around whining men, it revolves around men that are confident enough to know what a woman needs in order to get the respect they want. It is the simple stuff mom taught you as a child, “treats others as you want to be treated”, and by all means love yourself enough to stand up for what you want. And if some man says that you are not respecting him then ask yourself why, and I’ll bet ten to one that it is because of the way he is treating you. Don’t be swayed by all this. Go back to the ten commandments. I always give the benefit of the doubt, but I will never respect someone that does not respect me. This life is to short to waist it on some selfish person that does not care to find out why his wife does not respect him. marriage is a partnership and both people involved are equal. it does not mean that a woman can’t help her husband feel better about something or some issue and help him to regain his masculinity, how about a man helping his woman to feel better about a something or some issue, in turn she will love you forever. When I say help her, I don’t mean pick and choose things so that you can say you tried, I mean each and every day that you live. It is a constant never ending every day thing, and when you really love someone, it is easy and it is not an issue to do almost anything that would help. It is when men manipulate a woman to achieve a result that messes up the marriage and vise verse. Sometimes our up bring gets in our way, but that should not mean that a man or woman should just give up and go cheat. It is a job and when you get to a point where you understand each other and can come to the need and it is not taken the wrong way then you have truly achieved that closeness and connection that sustains a relationship. This again is just my opinion, and one formed from being with whining men that don’t have a clue how to treat a woman and how to be intimate with a woman. Gosh, if only they knew, they would be in ecstasy.

  4. (TANZANIA)  It is not a comment as such but I have problem with my wife. She is doing things as such she is not married. She can decide to take a loan without any information. Once she failed to repay and the secret become open. Recently she took a loan and she took my passport size and a letter with a forged signature. Not only that, she decided even to sell some of furniture without any consent.

    Sometimes she will decide to travel with no information. She is telling people that once I divorce her, she is going to kill me. This is a terrible statement to me. I even decided divorce, as I explained above taking loan without consent sometimes she takes money from the family without defined purpose. Is this a wife or a burden to me, although we have four children up to now?

  5. (USA)  Question: Is this disrespect to me?

    I am a husband feeling there is consistent disrespect in my marital relationship (21 years of it now) and has led to feelings of general ambivalence. Other readers have raised questions of specificity. What defines respect/disrespect and it is in the eye of the beholder? Obviously communication is key, but when it breaks down and there are different ideas of respect/disrespect, there is no easy path to resolution (prayer is assumed here).

    Example: my wife has kept a journal her entire life and it continued during the marriage, but the journal is where thoughts and feelings are shared and when they involve me, it is only shared in the journal and not with me. I have always felt very disrespected (if not betrayed) by this behavior and have made it very well known.

    1. (AUSTRALIA)  Having your own private space is not disrespectful. If you feel entitled to things that people in healthy, mature relationships aren’t entitled to, then you will feel disrespected. This is not a sign of being disrespected, this is a sign of warped thinking. Unless you get help to look into why you have such thinking, you will be resentful and display it in ways that will harm your wife, shut her down and cause you to feel even more disrespected.

  6. (USA)  How can you respect a spouse who deceives you? They don’t deserve respect and about the culture, African? There are many other cultures that the woman are treated like ‘nobodies’–I don’t agree on keeping quiet for the sake of the husband if he is doing wrong! I am outspoken and will not take crap from him. I will call him on every matter now and try to stand up for myself from years of emotional abuse (approx 15 years) without realizing it until recently with a pro therapist –she’s awesome! Finally a shrink that made sense and actually felt like they cared!

    So, it’s either accept his infidelities and ‘live with it’ or ‘leave’ so I’m finally choosing to exit this farst of a marriage! Girls, stay strong don’t let them get away with all the crap they’re trying pull on us–watching porno, having affairs, and flirting, Who needs someone like that?! There are some ‘good’ pure ones out there, so don’t give up the faith and hope!

  7. (SOUTH AFRICA)  Thanks for the reading. It is straight to the point. I needed this because I’m turning 30 and getting myself ready for marriage. I used to argue with my boyfriend but I believe after this, I will show more respect that I never knew. God Bless you and your family.

  8. (NIGERIAN/UK)  I am a Nigerian now living in the UK. I have been married for 38 years with children and grandchildren.

    The Bible first, lays the duty on wives to respect their husbands and it is followed with husbands love your wives. If it is followed that way, there will be happy home. If a wife respects her husband, he is duty bond to love and respect her also. We are all human and that fact needs to be recognised in us. Respect and Love is reciprocal. If we ever believe in the spirit of give and take then we will live a God fulfilled life.

    Where a wife respects her husband and he is not giving love back in return or a husband shows love to his wife and she is not giving respect back to him, then the up bringing must have been faulty on the side of the spouse that is failing in his/her duty to the marriage. I presume the two cannot fail simultaneously.

    Having said this, what is required is patience and faith in God. We can only achieve this (patience and faith) through prayers. The spouse that thinks he/she is doing his/her duty, should invest more in prayers to God to change the heart of his/her partner ‘from heart of stone to a heart of flesh’.

    Couples should be very mindful of the way they live their lives because it reflects in the behaviour of their children when they grow up in life. What I am saying in effect is that their own up bringing has been faulty and they should correct it now for their children to live a Godly life. And more importantly to break the circle of failed marriages in their line(s).

    God bless marriages. In Jesus Name, amen.

  9. (USA)  I am so hurt. My husband says that he does not want to be married, but he still stays at home with me and the children. Most days he ignores me, but wants intimacy at night. He does not communicate with me after the intimate moments just tells me that he does not know if he wants to be married to me and has refused to contribute much of anything financially. I know that divorce is wrong. I am so hurt. What do I do?

    1. Hi. My name is Denise. I am 58 years old and yes, I am a Christian, along with being called by God. My husband is a preacher. He is so controlling. We have been married for 3 years now. We have never stayed in the same household for a whole month since we’ve been married. He is always raising trouble about something. He is back and forth between me and his daughter. He is belittling me all the time and doesn’t want to ever do anything, except for his family, he will go out for them. He is always saying he is the head but how can one be the head when they have not taken on the responsibility?

      I know it is wrong to get a divorce… I know that. When I tell you this man is so toxic, he is just that. But I know God doesn’t want me to be unhappy either. I have tried and tried for the last three years. I have prayed about it and he is the same way. I would always take him back and we stay together for about 2 weeks and there he goes again, running to his daughter’s. He doesn’t pay any bills. So what is a sister to do? I can’t take anymore of his madness.

      1. Denise, I’m so sad for you that your husband has been treating you this way. This is not what marriage is all about… at all! I’m sorry you find yourself in this place in your marriage. The best thing I could recommend to you is to contact the ministry of Focus on the Family. They have counselors on staff who could possibly point you in a better direction. They have a ministry at thriving pastor.org that reaches out to help pastors and their families. So, as a pastor’s wife, you have the ability to get some special help in ways that you most need it. Please go to their web site and go into the “Contact Us” section to reach out to them in the way that it will best work for you (whether calling, emailing, or whatever). I believe they can give you some insights that will be wise, because they truly do understand the dynamics of the pastoral family. I hope this helps.

  10. (USA)  I’m not sure if this will make it on the board but I am a man who emotionally, verbally, physically abused his wife. We were together for 5 years. The relationship was far too complex for me to describe in detail but maybe my thoughts/reflections can provide some insight.

    *Please note I am not trying to be dismissive, shift blame, or somehow make excuses for things I did. My behaviors and actions were of my own choosing and I take full ownership of the pain and hurt I caused.

    1. Yes Matt, We’d welcome your reflections… as long as they don’t condone abusive behavior. However, you might want to post it within one of the articles in the “Abuse in Marriage” topic. But you will know if that would work out best or not.

  11. (USA) I got married very young age 21 years old, had one child from my 1st husband. Was married only 2 years, not because I was not a good wife or hard working women, but because I would not let him control me. He started going out on me, having marital affairs out of our marriage. I would say I was very independent. I got on my own at a very young age of 16 years.

    I got married to my 2nd husband after being single for 8 years. My second husband and I were married for 9 years; he was a very good and hardworking wonderful husband. Full of love and romance, But most of all with so much respect. We had a wonderful son together. All that change one Tuesday morning back in 1991. He went to work and never came back. He saw my values as a wonderful wife, and a hard working women, and mother of two wonderful boys. He was everything a woman would ask for in a marriage. He would never call me any names, even when I had my stressful days.

    Today, I have been married for the last 15 years to my 3rd husband. For the last 13 years, my husband and I have had these big hateful fights and lots of bitterness from our past. We call each other very bad names. And, yet I can say that I am a good Christian woman. I get up each morning around 4:30 am, pray and talk to my Lord- read books to help me understand why my marriage is not working out. When we have big fights, he throws it in my face about what a good Christian women I am. There are times that I would like to stop reading the Bible or stop praying. I knowing that God is hearing me. I know he is not going to put more on me than what I can handle in my marriage. God knows that I am try very hard to work this out, but it works both ways. My husband drinks and smokes a lot, which I hate. I try to have a drink with him to make him feel that I am part of his life. It is wrong! I don’t know.

    I have been my husband’s back bone for the last 15 years, moved away and sold my home when we first met. I work long hard hours and come home to make dinner for my husband for the last 15 years just about every night. He comes home to a very nice and clean home, washed clothes- very neat indoors. I take his clothes to the cleaners each week. I mow the lawn for him, take out the trash. I am the handyman around the home, so our home looks nice at all times. I even wash his truck at times. I am a woman who knows how to be resourceful with the things we have. I am frugal with our money and can budget very well. We have a wonderful home, nice cars, etc. I know my husband is working long hours, and the days he does take off- he can go and play golf or take the family boat out for the day.

    Ok, I understand he is under a lot of pressure at work, but he has a family as well. He comes home, starts to drink and smoke. He does not see my needs as a women or values, does not stop and say “Hi how are you, how was your day” no Hi kiss, or anything.” This is what makes a women very bitter and hateful. I know one thing we do not respect each other, we have so much hate inside of each other! You ask yourself, what I have done, why is he so cool? Are there other women in this field? All I really would like to have in my marriage is to be loved and respected as a wife. One thing about my husband, he does not see my value or share any of my feelings.

    Okay, can anyone tell me what is a really going on with my husband? I have tried everything. After going through so much in my life- I just ask myself, would it be best to be single? I am 52 years old. My daughter is in her last 4 years of school. Is it time to move on?

  12. (INDIA) Thanks for your suggestions to be a good wife and create a strong bond with my husband. My marriage is of two years only and there is alot of tension in our relationship. It is very difficult for me to stay in this relationship. But in our Indian culture after marriage separation is not possible. So I will try to be a good wife with the help of your suggestions.

  13. (SOUTH AFRICA) I believed in 50/50 but it almost killed my marriage. I have changed and am giving him the respect that he deserve as a man.