6 ways to give your husband what he needs (and it's not what you think)

He might not say it out loud, but here's what he's hoping for.

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  • Successful relationships are built when two people are unselfish enough to change their focus from their needs to making the needs of their partner a priority. It can take a lifetime to develop that kind of selfishness, but it's something worth working toward. Here are a few ways to can start better meeting your husband's needs:

  • Need: Adventure

  • You might wonder what your husband is really looking for when it comes to fun. Every man is different, but each one is looking for some excitement.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Take him somewhere you've never been before

    • Learn a new skill together

    • Read up on some new kissing tips and try them out on him

  • Need: To feel handsome

  • You probably already know how much value men put on physical appearance, so it shouldn't surprise you that he really needs to know he's attractive.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Tell him he's handsome

    • Touch him

    • Gift him a facial or Korean body scrub (you'll be surprised by how much he appreciates this)

  • Need: To provide for his family

  • Even if you are the primary breadwinner for your family, it's still important for him to feel like his contributions to the family are significant.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Identify ways he supports your family (even if it's not monetarily)

    • Express gratitude daily

    • Foster opportunities for him to teach skills to your kids

  • Need: To be a human - not a superhero

  • A pedestal isn't a comfortable place, so don't put your husband on one. He needs to feel like he doesn't need perfect so that he can feel free make mistakes, avoid discouragement and grow.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Communicate openly about your own mistakes and weaknesses

    • Have weekly inventories with each other about how to improve

    • Tactfully express displeasure with his mistakes (don't hold it in)

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  • Need: Space

  • Marriage is a valuable union because the power of two is greater than one. However, that power can only be harnessed if the two people embrace their individuality. Each of you needs to value your independence to make your relationship successful. So make meeting your husband's need for space a priority.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Send him on a relaxing vacation like an amusement park of hot tubs and saunas

    • Encourage him to have a guys night

    • Support his hobbies (even if you don't enjoy them) by cheering at his baseball game or buying him equipment

  • Need: Respect

  • Just turn on the TV and you'll see the dumb husband trope played over and over again. Treating your husband like he's playing that part in real life doesn't do him (or you) any favors. You know he's better than that. Your husband needs to feel respected, especially by you.

  • Ways to meet this need

    • Don't complain to your kids or other family members about him

    • Listen to his opinion and take his advice

    • If you disagree with a choice he makes, talk to him about it away from your kids

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Melinda Fox has a bachelor's degree in English and is a member of the FamilyShare content team. She loves Shakespeare, listening to her favorite songs on repeat and journaling.

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