You always hear the saying ‘Happy wife, happy life’ but what about the husbands? I’m thinking about changing it up to something like ‘Happy spouse, happy house’. Okay, it’s kind of hokey but my point is that maybe the secret to a happy home isn’t a clean house or well behaved children (ok I’m sure both if those would help) but a happy spouse who feels loved and respected, and that includes husbands.
I remember a few years ago, shortly after having my first child, I told a friend (a mother of 2) how overwhelming it was trying to make everything work, making sure the house was clean, my daughter was happy and fed, and trying to find quality time with my husband. She said ‘Make sure your husband is happy and everything else will follow’. At the time, I liked the idea but was so overwhelmed with my new baby that I didn’t really grasp the idea or why it was important.
Fast forward four years (and another kid) later, I stumbled up on this article about spoiling your spouse on Pinterest. I read it and a little lightbulb went off in my head, remembering the conversation with my friend from many years previous. I guess if you hear something more than once, it’s probably worth giving a shot right?!?
I am totally guilty of putting my kids above all. I guess I felt like if I didn’t put them as my top priority and do everything for them, who would, ya know? This meant that my poor husband often gets put on the back burner, which is pretty uncool considering he was in my life first and is pretty much the reason my little rugrats are here.
The article also makes a great point that spoiling your children and doing everything for them “can lead to self-entitlement and teaches selfishness”. No one wants their children to be selfish. I mean come on now.
As one of my New Year’s resolutions, I wanted to make sure that I was showing my husband daily that he was loved and a priority in my life. This idea kind of stemmed from the ‘spoil your husband’ concept.
So, in honor of spoiling my husband, here are some things you are probably already doing for your kids that you should be doing for your husband:
- Take them to do something they want to do – you’re always taking kids to park, dance class, soccer practice or wherever their little heart desires. Now do this for your husband. Pick something
he enjoys doing and go do it together. This shows that you pay attention to what he likes and are making an effort to take part in his interests. Go to a sporting event, movie or restaurant that he likes. Maybe there’s a boat or car show in town he’s dying to go to. Whatever it is, suck it up and go with him (and no matter how bored you are, pretend you’re loving it).
- Solve his problems – you spend hours solving problems for your kids every day (“I have an owie”, “where’s my purple dinosaur?”). Figure out what’s bugging your husband and find a solution. Is he stressed at work? Try bringing him lunch or getting takeout delivered. Is he having a hard time finding something? Help him look for it or find it for him.
- Give him a bro-playdate – your kids enjoy it when you take them to spend time with their friends (or your friends kids). Sometimes your guy just wants to go out with the guys and do guy things. Give him a night (or day) off to go do something with the boys (and make sure to not make him feel guilty about it before or after).
- Buy him the thing he wants – you’re always giving in to your kids when they ask for things (because honestly, sometimes it’s easier than saying no), so when your husband says he wants or needs something (a new suit, get his car detailed, tickets to an event) just get it for them. He’ll appreciate the gesture and he’ll know that you’re listening.
- Make him his favorite meal (or get takeout from his favorite restaurant) – if you’re anything like me, you probably cook special food just for your kids. Your husband deserves the same treatment every once in a while. Try making one of his favorite meals once a month, or if he says he likes something you eat at a friend’s or family member’s house, get the recipe and make it at home. Does he dream about chicken satay from the local Thai restaurant (my husband does)? Get take out for him on a night when you don’t have time (or the energy) to cook.
Now, it’s my turn to practice what I preach.