Do you sometimes get really frustrated with your husband when he doesn’t see the need to tackle a project quickly? Do you get exasperated when he doesn’t seem to have a clue how you feel or why you feel the way you do? Well, here’s a news bulletin. He doesn’t understand how you think and feel because he’s not a woman! In Genesis 1:27, we are reminded that God created two distinctly different kinds of people…. “male and female he created them.” Your man doesn’t think or emote like you because God created him to be different than you!
Men don’t generally sense an urgency to get the kid’s schedule figured out or the house vacuumed. But you do. Men don’t usually like to sit and talk about their concerns regarding the children or their job. You might need to do that, but men generally check out by entering the “nothing box” in their head!
I guess what I’m saying is…don’t be surprised that your husband doesn’t seem to understand you. He won’t understand you all the time because you’re a woman and he is not. This makes it all the more important for you to have good female friendships. Make it a point to spend some time with other women, in person or on the phone, at least twice a week. You need someone to understand and validate your thoughts, fears, hopes, and frustrations. (Just one caution though. Don’t bad-mouth your husband in the process.)
Are you often really disappointed in your husband because he doesn’t seem to have a lot of empathy in your times of stress or sadness? Do you find yourself longing for him to comfort you during times of discouragement or heartbreak, but he doesn’t seem to notice your distress or understand what you need? Well, join the club!
For most of my marriage to Raul, I found myself getting repeatedly frustrated that he didn’t comfort me when I needed comfort or even seem to notice that I needed empathy! Then one day about 2 years ago, I felt the Holy Spirit nudge me and say, “He doesn’t know what you need unless you spell it out to him.” What?! I remember thinking that if I have to tell him exactly what I need in those moments of despair or frustration, then his attempt to comfort wouldn’t be meaningful. You might think the same thing. However, I was wrong.
When I finally spelled out to my husband EXACTLY what I needed in moments of heartbreak, discouragement, or stress, he followed through. He actually thanked me for TELLING him what I needed. And guess what? Even though I told him what I needed, it was still very comforting when he did what I instructed him to do. Just in case you’re wondering what I asked him to do. I said “Come up to me and wrap me in your arms and hold me tight. Then pat my back gently 3 times and say ‘I can understand how that would make you feel and it’s going to be okay’.” It was amazing! I was comforted!
Husbands are not mind-readers! If you need something, tell them! Otherwise, your husband will sense that he’s failing you but be unsure of what to do. Explaining exactly what you need is actually an act of compassion toward your husband. This reminds me of the verse in Colossians 3:12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.