One of the greatest adventures anyone can embark upon is the quest for a strong, lasting relationship. For heterosexual men in particular, when it comes to marriage, we’re often fed a toxic stereotype that teaches us men and women will never understand each other.
Whether we want to hear it or not, relationships—especially marriage—take some work. Don’t let that four-letter word scare you, though. The rewards of a well-cultivated romance are undeniable.
Particular attention must be paid to the fine balance between your own happiness and the happiness of your significant other. Let’s admit it: this is not always an easy balance to maintain. It’s a continually changing situation that needs regular monitoring and adjustments.
So, here’s some advice on how you can tackle the most common issues faced by men in relationships.
Everyone wants to be heard, and this is especially true when it comes to romantic partners. One of the biggest problems people in relationships encounter is the feeling their partner isn’t listening to them
Of course, it is a generalization to say all men listen and react a certain way. But, it is common for men to be more focused on problem solving than on being empathetic.
So guys, if your wife comes home from work upset because she just learned her workload is going to increase, don’t just jump right to suggesting solutions such as how she could become more efficient at her job.
First, just acknowledge her feelings and commiserate the change in her situation. Let her vent about how unfair it is, and above all, shut up and listen!
It is often necessary for both men and women to recognize and process how they feel about something upsetting before they can act to resolve it. In fact, a conversation about an issue is often where we identify how we are feeling, so it’s vital to not cut this process short.
Once we’ve let ourselves actually feel our negative emotions, we can let them go and move on to seeking solutions.
Another thing that hero husbands are good at is supporting their partners in a sticky situation. This applies to long-term partners too, although the commitment is more implicit.
It can be difficult to support someone in a troublesome situation, especially if part of the problem is self-made. You may feel like you’re helping by pointing out possible self-induced issues.
But you need to remember that your loyalty should be with your partner in most situations. You don’t have to agree with them fully or think they are blameless to offer support and be on their side.
Of course, it’s important to discuss where you think someone is in the wrong, but in a calm and rational way. It’s best to do this while assuring your loved one that you are firmly in her corner. Otherwise, she’s likely to feel that the world is not only against them, but you are too.
Another trait of the hero husband/partner is showing physical affection. This doesn’t just mean when you are being intimate. It also means in everyday life. A kiss before you leave for work or a cuddle on the sofa while watching TV can work wonders.
These little demonstrations of affection don’t have to be elaborate displays, and will make her feel loved and acknowledged. They also reinforce the positive state of your relationship and bring you closer.
Special Occasions and Gifts
Let me be emphatic here: hero husbands do not forget special occasions! They remember anniversaries, birthdays, and other important dates. This can’t be overstated: take any chance you can to show her you made an effort!
Do yourself a favor and stop listening to friends who think women just want material things. More often than not, it really is the thought that counts. And the feeling that you care enough to remember counts even more than the thought.
A gift shows that you care enough to keep her on your mind and plan things centered on your relationship. It can also represent how much gratitude you have for her being in your life.
Some men can see the sense of gift giving, but get stumped as to what to buy their other half. This takes us back to the all-important skill of listening! She has probably dropped a hint or two about what she likes, but were you paying attention? Ultimately, if you are totally clueless about what to get her, there are plenty of online resources with specific gifts for women sections to help you out.
Sometimes, quality time together can be as good as any gift. This is especially true if you take the time to plan some sort of adventure that will create lasting memories.
The wisest hero husbands know that occasionally choosing their partner over a guy’s night out is a shrewd move. Shows her that she’s your top priority when it comes down to it.
Trust is a Must
If nothing else, heroes are known to be true to their word. Honesty is a vital part of a successful relationship. It’s almost impossible to be close to someone when you can’t trust that what they are saying is the truth.
This holds true for all dishonesty, no matter how big or small the lies involved. Telling big lies is never good for a relationship or your own personal health and well-being. But some guys forget that little white lies can be just as damaging. These can slowly erode your partner’s trust over time.
This is especially the case when your other half asks you to do something. Of course, “honey do” lists can sometimes seem never-ending. But consistently putting them off after promising to take care of things only creates tension and resentment.
So always strive to tell the truth. More often than not, you’ll be accorded the same respect by your partner.
Allow Yourself to Be Supported
Remember that things don’t just flow in one direction. Relationships aren’t just about making your partner feel special and supported. It’s also important to give them a chance to support you if you are going through a hard time.
This can be tough for men, as we are often taught that accepting or asking for help is a sign of weakness. But in fact, the opposite is true: allowing someone to help you when you are struggling takes a lot of humility and strength.
It also creates a space of “give and take” in your relationship, as well as showing the other person they are valued and important.
Okay, I know I’ve outlined a lot of stuff here. Don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to become a hero husband/partner overnight. Take one aspect of your relationship mentioned above and focus on improving that area over the course of a week or two.
Once you feel like you’ve improved in one area, move onto another one. Keep working on that relationship, and stop worrying what planet you and your partner are from!
Featured Image Source: Pixabay