Recently I asked you what your husband does (or could do) to make you feel loved. At the same time, I asked the men on The Generous Husband what makes them feel respected. The raw results of both surveys, including all the comments, are posted on the Marriage Bed site. Here I want to look at trends in what husbands said.
I am doing this as the start of a series on love and respect on both blogs. A small group we meet with weekly has been going through the Love and Respect Live Marriage Conference DVDs done by Emerson and Sarah Eggerichs. I have long been a fan of the Love and Respect book, and the DVD series is even better. Emerson is an excellent speaker, and the information is exceptional. One of the complaints I hear about his material is he makes it seem all men are the same and all women are the same. He addresses that well in the DVDs. While there are no one size fits all answers, much of this does fall along gender lines for most couples. Learn the general truths, and then figure out how to modify them for you and your spouse.
What makes men feel respected? The 166 men who answered the survey give us a good look at this. I have grouped these by similar idea. The number after each if the number of men who said something along these lines.
- Honouring my parenting decisions and not contradicting me in front of the kids (33)
- Sex (Do it, do it more, initiate) (27)
- Compliments me, says proud of me, affirms me (25)
- Respects/values my opinions and point of view (18)
- Seeks my input and considers it (16)
- Lack of eye rolling, sarcasm, yelling or mocking when we talk (15)
- Speaks well of me to others (15)
- Listen with interest (14)
- Treats me like an adult, not a child (13)
- Supports my decisions/ Not second guessing me (13)
- Gives me the benefit of the doubt (13)
- Sees my job as important (11)
- Only questions or criticises in private (10)
- Not interrupting when I am speaking (10)
- Lets me lead the family (10)
- Trusts me (9)
- Supports me in public (9)
- Non-sexual touch (8)
- Keep the house nice (7)
- Speaks clearly her feelings and needs (6)
- Does not nag me (5)
- Nice reception when I get home (5)
- Values what I do around the house (5)
- Puts our marriage ahead of others (including our kids) (5)
- Respects/ trusts my driving (3)
- Takes care of how she looks (3)
- Willing to admit when she is wrong and apologise (2)
A major issue for men is not being insulted or negatively questioned in front of others. This includes the couple’s kids, family, and friends. Contradicting or invalidating his parenting in front of the kids was a huge issue. Second-guessing, and interrupting were also big issues. On the positive side compliments, especially “I’m proud of you for ____” are powerful. Men feel respected when their wife sought and considered their ideas, and when their wife shows value for his opinions. As for sex, one man put it well by saying, “Respect my need for sex.”
Do you know which items above your husband finds critical? If so, work on doing them. If not, find out ASAP!
In This Series: