How to Let Your Man Know What You Truly Need from Him

How to Let Your Man Know What You Really Need From Him

You wouldn’t have to know me long.

Before you concluded I could use a break now and then.

You’d soon be saying, I bet that lady needs a tall latte.

Maybe even a dark chocolate truffle.

I wouldn’t need to explain all this.

You would just know.

As a woman, it would be obvious to you.

You’d take one look at my full-to-overflowing days . . . and you’d understand exactly what was needed.

A small retreat.

Away from the noisy house and the busy children.

Yes. I’m thinking a 16-ounce latte and a quiet, uninterrupted conversation with a tall grown-up.

Preferably him – the one who thinks so clearly and has such broad, caring shoulders.

Oh, yeah, definitely him.

Now isn’t that readily apparent to you?

But for some reason it was NOT apparent to my husband and I had a hard time believing he couldn’t see it.

An Eye-Opening Conversation

So one day we had a conversation about this need of mine.

It began by my asking, “Can I tell you a little bit about me?”

Yes…

“Well, I love being your wife.

And I love being a mother.

And I could keep going on like this for the rest of my life.”

Small pause, so he’d see I was sincere.

“But you know something else about me? I do sooo much better when I get to step away from here occasionally.

“Not only get away, but go out and have time together with you. It would do me a world of good.”

I drew breath and then finished with, “So do you think we could pull that off? You know . . . arrange for that on a regular basis?”

He started to laugh (though I didn’t really see the humor).

His response? “Strange. I never looked at it that way.”

My turn. “Ummm….So how do you look at it, Dear?”

“Well, I guess that since I’m away from the house all day, my favorite thing is to come home to my family. I love it when we’re sitting around together and don’t feel a particular need to go back out again. And I thought you felt the same way.

So as it turned out, he really was unaware.

I had to explain what I was hoping for and even what that looked like to me. I wasn’t asking for a Mediterranean Cruise or an expensive dinner out – just a latte, please (though chocolate wouldn’t hurt).

Mostly I wanted time with him.

But in his mind, our evenings together at home counted as “time.”

It didn’t count so much with me.

He didn’t know what I needed. That was something he had to hear from me.

How to Let Your Man Know What You Really Need From Him

How to Let Your Man Know What You Truly Need from Him

Pray.

Bring it before The Lord first. Ask Him to help you say what you want to say in a loving manner. Also, ask Him to prepare your husband’s heart to hear you.

Come clean.

Let go of any bitterness or resentment that might have built up before this. Come with a fresh spirit.

Prepare him.

Let him know you’ve got something on your mind and you’re looking forward to sharing it with him.

Approach him.

Gently. With words seasoned with grace. Not accusing or demanding, simply laying down your needs before him.

Be patient.

Don’t be discouraged if it takes a while to sink in. Or if you have to repeat your request periodically and in different ways. Patiently and lovingly remind him of your needs.

Show appreciation.

If he tries at all, then express gratitude for his efforts. Don’t only say it in words, but also in your attitude. Make sure he sees what a difference it makes in your life.

Be willing to leave it there.

This might be the hardest one. Some needs can go for a long time before they’re met. Others never will be met. At least by him. Because God is the only One who promises to supply all you need (Phil. 4:19).

So go ahead and let him know what you need. Whatever it might be.

And, of course, what I need these days is a tall latte.

Chocolate.

Above all, some time away with my Man.

But you already knew that…. 😉

In His grace,

Signature small
(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)
100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe to CLUB31WOMEN.

Why We Need to Stop Journaling All His Faults

Why We Need to Stop Journaling All His Faults

Think back with me, for a moment, to when you first met your spouse.

Do you remember those looks you exchanged from across a room? That smile that made the rest of your day awesome? How simply standing near them that made your heart beat a bit faster?

It seems that while we were dating we were on our best behavior. We used our manners, we were patient and understanding, we overlooked the other’s little quirks, and laughed at each others jokes.

The day of the wedding comes and we think this is as close to heaven as we can get.

We are excited to set up a home together and we walk around with hearts in our eyes.

As the honeymoon phase disappears so do the hearts in our eyes as we begin to see the reality of our lives; namely that we are married to a sinner. We can’t be on our best behavior all of the time and soon little quirks become annoying and faux pas turn into big deals.

This is when some whip out their notebooks or diaries and begin to keep a list of their spouse’s sins and shortcomings.

Shameful, right? But we all do it. We may not put pen to paper and physically write them down.

But we journal our husbands’ faults onto the pages of our hearts so we never forget.

Man does more harm to man than animals do to man. – Ralph Venning

Why We Need to Stop Journaling All His Faults

Throw Away the Journal

It is usually the people closest to us that hurt us the most and in ways that we would never imagine.

And this goes both ways. We hurt those closest to us more than any other.

Living as husband and wife brings with it lots of blessings, laughter, joys, and fun, but it also harbors a darker side. The side where we say and do things that wound and tear down.

For some, keeping track of those hurts is a way to protect themselves while others use those remembered wounds as way to hurt back. It is a way to build up their debt against us and to make sure they somehow pay.

But this is not God’s way.

He does not keep an account of our wrong. He does not wait for a day where he can stick it to us. He does not throw our transgressions at us in a fit of anger.

God gives us mercy and grace. He forgives and then puts our sins from us. He helps us in our weakness and loves us dearly when we fail. He always wants our best and this should be our attitude towards our husbands.

We have to stop recording all the wrongs.

We must stop revisiting the sins of our husbands.

Our forgiveness must be total.

It is not enough to say that we forgive with our lips, but we must forgive in our hearts (Col 3:13). This means not bringing the offense up again, not holding it over the other’s head. This is one of the first steps in receiving freedom from the pain that was caused.

Forgiveness is hard and showing grace is impossible if we have not experienced the grace of God in our own lives first. The forgiveness and complete love God has for us becomes overwhelming when we understand the messiness of our hearts, the dishonor we show God, and the ungratefulness we exhibit towards Christ and his work.

This understanding is what allows us to throw away our journals and show grace and forgiveness to others, especially our spouses.

 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. ~ Colossians 3:13

Blessings,
Jen

(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)
100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe to CLUB31WOMEN.

15 Ways to Say You Love Him…Without Ever Saying A Word

15 Ways to Say You Love Him (Without Ever Saying a Word)

I’m not sure that I understood the man’s mind when we first got married.

Or maybe I should say understood his masculine heart.

I mean, I thought I did . . . but it turned out I had a lot to learn.

Lots and lots.

Basically, clueless.

I figured mostly what I needed to do was to look up at him with adoring eyes and occasionally say, “I love you” and that about covered it.

It had worked so well when we were dating . . . .

But less so as time went on.

Not that he still didn’t want to hear it, but I found there were other ways to tell the guy that you love him.

I discovered that – much like me – he needs to hear love spoken in a variety of ways.

And he needs more than just big eyes and a few romantic words.

So my friend Christy and I decided to pool our marriage experience to offer some suggestions (sort of a “two for one” deal) in case you were looking for new ideas too.

So here’s what we came up with . . . .

15 Ways to Say You Love Him

1.     Prepare him food that he especially likes.

I know. It may seem a bit silly to you, but the feeling is real. They might say that “Love makes the world go round,” but the truth is—it’s food.

Especially cinnamon rolls.

Preferably homemade and with extra cinnamon goo.

2.     Do one of his chores that he wouldn’t expect you to do.

Surprise! All done. Just ’cause and no need for thanks.

3.     Display overt public affection.

Remember how you used to drape yourself all over him when you were dating or engaged? (you did do this, didn’t you??)

Well, no reason to leave off with that lovey-dovey stuff.

Even my silver-haired hunk of a guy loves it when I wrap my arms around his neck. Or tuck my arm into his. Or snuggle in next to him. Right in front of everyone.

Somewhat embarrasses the teenagers, but I figure it’s good for them.

And I know it’s good for him.

4.     Tell him Chris Hemsworth only wishes he could look so good.

No explanation necessary. 😉

5.     Serve him with style.

For instance, making his dinner could be described as my “job.” But when I add a little extra flair? Put some finishing touches on the plate? Present it with a warm smile?

It communicates that it’s not only my job – it’s my pleasure.

6.     Buy white bread on occasion.

Contains zero nutrition.

And a bit hard on the soul.

But there you have it.

The way to a man’s heart.

7.     Initiate you-know-what.

Your man likes to know that you find him desirable too.

8.     Do something cheerfully where you would normally have a habit of whining and making his life miserable.

So go ahead and shock the socks off of him.

9.    Brag on him.

Tell family and friends – maybe even complete strangers – how much you appreciate the man that he is. Preferably within his hearing.

10.    Make an effort to enjoy an activity along with him, even though it’s not your thing.

Sometimes “laying down your life” means watching a sports game with him. Tagging along on that unfamiliar adventure. Or, in my case, being willing to go dirt-camping when I’d rather sit by clear, blue water at an upscale resort. Sigh.

11.    Play footsies with him under the table.

You wouldn’t believe something so simple could be so effective. My husband still looks up with astonishment – and I’ve been playing this game with him for over 20 years now!

12.    Learn the lingo of his favorite hobby.

Casually throw out your thoughts on the improved clinch knot or perhaps the Boone & Crockett Club. Or maybe drop some remark about the halyard or hawser. This kind of vocabulary is sure to get his attention.

13.    Communicate contentment.

Let him know that he makes you happy.

Not that he – or your marriage – is perfect.

Not that you both don’t have room to grow.

But for today, for now, you’re content with him and the life you enjoy together.

It will mean a lot to him.

More than you might know.

14.   Tell him, “Go fishing. You deserve it!”

My husband calls it “recess.”

So give him your blessing to go outside and play.

15.   Listen to his heart.

Even if he doesn’t share it with words. Listen anyway. And listen carefully.

Because his masculine heart might be different than your feminine one.

But it’s still a heart.

And it’s his.

So why not tell him you love him? 

Without so much as a word.

In His grace,

Lisa & Christy

*Got any fun additions to add to our list here? Please share! 

(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)
100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe to CLUB31WOMEN.

What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful: A Few Things You Might Not Know

What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful - A Few Things You Might Not Know

Love is a complicated infrastructure.

A thing you are either building up or letting fall into decay.

What makes it strong are the deeds done in the everyday walk of life.

What makes it beautiful is two unique people coming together and making their own unique kind of love.

It doesn’t come from textbooks or formulas, or to-do lists.

You’ve probably seen my parents from afar, either online here or maybe speaking at a conference somewhere. But I’ve lived around them for a long time, so in case you were wondering . . .

Here are a few things you might not know about my parents’ love:

They talk about everything.

Even tiny, inconsequential things.

Sometimes I wonder at them as they sit chatting away about a subject that seems to be of little importance. They mull it over, and in between second cups of coffee, they look at it from their different angles.

It’s a slow process, and I must confess, sometimes, as an observer, I grow impatient. Why talk about the small things of life? Schedules? Planning? Little worries and concerns?

And then it came clear to me one day . . . that to them, this was sharing life.

There are so few mountain top experiences in this life, and they could not wait at the bottom hungering for them.

They find their love, on Monday and Wednesday, and the week-end.

They make their love talking about the smallest of things.

They live their life confiding the tiniest thoughts.

They like going everywhere together.

Even to tiny, inconsequential places.

Again, this seems to me to be taken somewhat too far.

Going to feed the chickens? Let me come with you! Going to work in the garden? I’ll come.

No matter how small the destination happens to be – either of them is usually willing to tag along. It could be a trip to Home Depot, it could be to Costco. It could be to the tree nursery, or to the bank.

And all this takes place in little, dry, dusty Central Oregon.

But by their attitudes, you’d think they were going out for a round of champagne kisses.

They love touching each other.

Even in tiny, inconsequential places.

Dad and Mom like touching each other. Of course, since there are eight of us kids pretty much always around, they have to keep it toned down. But it seems to me that little touches are a thing too. Maybe brushing the back of a tired head, or stroking hair that’s gone a bit flat at the end of the day.

Sometimes I see them touching – without touching – by a look. It’s really understated most of the time.

It’s a slow burn of love, and it keeps on from day to day.

They take care of each other’s hearts.

Even in tiny, inconsequential ways.

If Dad is feeling worn out, Mom will often encourage him to go do something she knows will help him relax. Sometimes mom is feeling stressed,  and you’ll hear dad telling her to retire earlier than normal in the evening.

If one is down, the other will hurry to support. It’s like a friend thing.

Sometimes I get the feeling that they are just best friends. Not so much just lovers.

And, yes, in case you’re wondering, they argue.

And they get mad at each other . . . even sometimes for tiny, inconsequential things.

But all that never lasts long.

Their love is not perfect. It’s something much sexier than that.

It’s real.

What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful

With love,
Savoury Jacobson
(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)
100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe to CLUB31WOMEN.

What More Can You Ask For In A Husband and Father? {& Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie}

Husband and Father

As soon as I saw him interact with his younger brothers and sisters, I knew, I just knew, that one day he was going to be a great dad.

Wait, I take that back.

I knew that one day he was going to be an amazing dad to any future kids he had.

I was just hoping they would also be mine.

But back up. I wasn’t even married to him, or engaged for that matter. I had only known my now husband for about a month then, and already I was dreaming about marrying him and starting a family someday!

Lucky for me, he felt the same way.

But I’m not sure he felt that way a month after we had known each other. He took his time promising himself to me, while I was ready to jump right in and marry him, like yesterday and at 19 years old.

There was only one problem.

I had been informed by one of my doctors that it would be difficult to nearly impossible for me to have children.

Butterfinger Pie-2

Crazy In Love

We met in June, two weeks after I graduated high school. In January Josh told me he loved me for the first time. By April we were engaged and married by August.

I was 19 years old and he was 18 years old.

Just little baby newlyweds all goo-goo eyed and crazy in love.

Three weeks after our honeymoon, a nudge of intuition pushed me to buy a specific kind of test, you know…the kind that tells you if your life is going to change dramatically in about nine months?

I had planned on taking the test on my lunch break, but when my mother-in-love walked into the building where I worked, my inability to keep a secret got the better of me, and I told her my suspicions – she in turn encouraged me to take the test right away. So I did.

Butterfinger Pie-3

Right away a pink line indicating that I was going to be a parent popped up and my heart nearly burst.

I was pregnant. I was pregnant with his child.

We were going to be parents, and I would finally get to see him with a little tiny baby cradled in his arms…an image that has been prominently glued to my memory, an image that makes my heart leap and almost burst at the thought.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! ~ Psalm 127:3-5

Three kids (two daughters and a son) later, I still feel the same way as I did when I watched him first interact with his siblings. But now my heart skips a beat because I see him laughing, playing, comforting, and training them, not to mention teaching and showing them the love of Christ.

What more could I ask for in a husband and father?

Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie

Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie

It’s our church’s Father’s Day tradition of serving all the men pies after our Sunday service (they serve us breakfast on Mother’s Day).

My husband is kind of crazy about any kind of peanut butter dessert so I generally try to make something that I know he specifically will enjoy. This Peanut Butter and Butterfinger pie is definitely one of those, and if the father of your children is anything like mine, I promise that he will enjoy this pie for Father’s Day, too.

*What are some of your Father’s Day traditions?

~ Chels {Catz in the Kitchen}

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe here: CLUB31WOMEN.

Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie with a Pretzel Crust
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 10
 
Sweet and Salty is the theme of this creamy peanut butter pie. With chunks of Butterfinger and a salty pretzel crust, it's the perfect dessert to serve this summer.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups Cool Whip, thawed
  • 12 (fun sized) Butterfinger candy bars, finely chopped
  • ½ cup hot fudge topping, melted
  • 2 cups crushed pretzel crumbs
  • 6-8 tbsp butter, melted
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 250 degrees. In a food processor, process pretzels until they are fine little pieces. (You do not want a true crumb. You want the pretzel to still have some of it's former shape.) In a saucepan or microwave safe bowl, heat butter until melted. Use 6 tablespoons of butter if you want your crust to be crumbly. Or 8 tablespoons if you want a slightly firmer crust. Combine pretzel crumbs and butter until completely incorporate and pour into a 9-inch pie plate, make sure the bottom is evenly covered and the crumbs go up the sides.
  2. Bake the pie crust for 10-12 minutes. Remove and place on wire rack and allow to cool.
  3. Finely chop 9 of the fun-sized candy bars, reserving 3 for topping the pie.
  4. In a large bowl of your stand mixer using the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese, sugar, and peanut butter and beat until blended. Add whipped cream and the chopped Butterfingers and beat gently on a low speed until evenly distributed. Pour the peanut butter batter on top of the baked pretzel crust and gently, using a spatula, spread the mixture until it is evenly spread over the crust.
  5. Add the hot fudge topping to a microwave-safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds. Stir. It may not be completely melted after 30 seconds, so heat for an additional 10 secs, stirring after each interval. Gently pour and spread the hot fudge topping over the top of the pie, gently spreading the chocolate around, but leaving about a ½-inch space around the edge of the pie.
  6. Chop the remaining 3 Butterfinger bars and scatter the Butterfinger crumbs over the chocolate. Refrigerate for 6-8 hours before serving.

Those Little Things That Speak Big Volumes of Love

Those Little Things That Speak Volumes of Love

I’ve determined that my husband Ted has a foot fetish.

Okay, maybe “fetish” isn’t the right word. Perhaps “preoccupation” or “fixation” better applies here.

When I mentioned this to him the other day, he looked confused.

Foot? Fetish? Huh? Yep, his expression said it all.

That is, until I explained. Suddenly this confused look of his was replaced with one of understanding. You see, I reminded him how often matters of feet make him feel loved.

Take, for example, the matching of his freshly washed socks. In our twelve plus years of marriage, this is one action that he’s consistently responded to with an enthusiastic “You love me!”

But that’s not all.

As quirky as it may be, Ted likes me to touch his foot with my foot in the morning before I get out of bed. To him it’s a nonverbal reminder that “We’re good. There isn’t anything strained between us.” It helps him start the day freshly reminded that I love him.

And, if I really want my hot-footed husband to remember that he holds my heart, I grab a bottle of lotion and rub it on his feet while we Netflix binge watch in the evenings. Nothing like a foot massage to communicate to Ted that I’m still glad that I’m his wife.

What about your husband?

Perhaps he doesn’t have a “fantastic foot fetish,” as Ted now calls it, but I have no doubt there are little things that speak big volumes of love to your man. If nothing immediately comes to mind, perhaps it’s time to sharpen your inner Sherlock Holmes skills.

How can you do that? How can you strengthen those powers of observation?

Well, let’s get a bit scientific and look at four ways you can train yourself to be an expert in the ways of your husband.

1.     Observe

According to an article by Time, seeing and observing are not the same thing. It’s one thing “to see” or, as Dictionary.com notes, “to perceive with the eyes; to look at.” It’s another thing to “observe” or, as this trusty online resource explains, “regard with attention, especially so as to see or learn something.”

How can you make sure that you’re not simply seeing your husband, but actually observing him? You can do this by teaching yourself to focus your attention on the right details. This is where #2 comes in.

2.    Record

One way you can focus on the right details is by taking field notes. It might seem silly to pull out a notebook to write descriptions and maybe even draw pictures – you know, if you’re the artsy type – of the ways you notice your husband feels loved, but it’s something that Family Life President Dennis Rainey actually recommends. He encourages:

Become a student of your spouse. Make a list of things that communicate love to your mate and write it in something permanent that can’t be easily lost or forgotten.

3.     Analyze

Next, you can continually analyze your data. What do your notes tell you about the ways your husband feels most loved at this point in time? Is it when you speak affirming words to him? Perhaps it’s through acts of service, or maybe physical touch. Look for patterns or common threads. You know, perhaps things like feet.

4.     Test

Finally, make it a habit to regularly test out what you’re learning. Come up with hypotheses based on your observations and put them into action. Have fun determining “If I do _____, then my husband feels loved.”

In an article at ThrivingFamily.com, Dr. Paul C. and Teri K Reisser note:

Your school days may be long behind you, but you never need to stop learning. Careers, hobbies, parenting – life is full of opportunities to grow and gain new knowledge. Unfortunately, there is one subject that far too many adults stop learning about: the person they married.

Let’s not be those adults.

Instead, let’s be wives who are experts in the ways of our husbands. Wives who can confidently determine whether or not our husband has a “fantastic foot fetish.”

Ashleigh

(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)

Team US by Ashleigh Slater Team US: Marriage Together by Ashleigh Slater

Like a conversation with a true friend, this book is open, real, and honest. Ashleigh invites you inside her heart and home to humbly share wisdom gained from experiences she and her husband walked through….We highly recommend this book for couples of any age. ~ Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

*You can read my full review of Ashleigh’s book HERE: A Book Review – Team US Marriage Together

Ashleigh SlaterAshleigh Slater is the author of the book, Team Us: Marriage Together (Moody Publishers). As the founder and editor of Ungrind Webzine and a regular contributor at several popular blogs and websites, she loves to combine the power of a good story with biblical truth and practical application. Ashleigh lives in Atlanta with her husband Ted and four daughters.

To learn more, visit AshleighSlater​.com. You can also find her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter at @ashslater.

100 Ways to Love Your Husband by Lisa Jacobson and 100 Ways to Love Your Wife by Matthew L Jacobson

Subscribe to Club31Women

*If you’d like these posts delivered directly to your inbox (and get 2 FREE eBooks), Subscribe to CLUB31WOMEN.