Being a mom is one of the most exhausting and exhilarating experiences ever. On one hand, you are so tired from doing all the things. On the other, you are overjoyed by the amazing children you get to parent. There are things every mom needs from the father of their children. Let me share some of what your wife needs most from you.
What Your Wife Needs Most
******* Not married to the mother of your children? Many of these still apply to you. Please keep reading.
A mom’s day can be a cacophony of emotional and physical tasks. She is always on and always needed. She doesn’t pee alone, make food without hearing the baby cry, or do 100 other tasks without someone demanding 100% of her attention, focus, and a level of perfection she can’t often muster.
She needs your understanding.
The house isn’t cleaned the way you want.
Dinner was burned.
She begs to just go away for 15 minutes when you walk in from work.
She constantly asks you to help, do, move.
She knows you are tired. I promise she does. She sees your needs. She also knows that there is a limit for her. She has to stop at some point and breathe without anyone demanding anything from her.
Wash a dish.
Voluntarily take over a task.
Run a load of laundry from start to finish.
Come home and hand her the keys and tell her she gets time to herself.
Show her that you understand she has needs you don’t understand. It’s ok if you don’t completely understand but compassion could change everything.
Mothering is an all-consuming position. It robs her sleep, her personal time, and her thoughts. In the midst of all of this she can lose herself.
Let me be very clear. Don’t be a fixer. Don’t try to give her an identity you want to define for her.
Instead, see her. See the woman you loved before she ever became mom. Give her things to talk to you about that have nothing to do with mothering. Talk about a good book, time she spent with friends, a craft she enjoys doing.
This can seem draining but having conversations with your wife about things that seem trivial to you can help her to remember who she is beyond mothering.
Not Agreement but Support!
I am not asking you to agree with your wife all the time. True story, we women are wrong sometimes. There’s no lie about that. That said, many dads try to be the fun dad and end up stripping mom of her authority by going against all the rules she sets.
Be the fun dad but be fun in ways that doesn’t take away your wife’s authority with the kids.
Your wife said no sugar? – Let’s have a dart battle.
Don’t play rough with them before bed. – Let’s make up a crazy silly story together.
We can’t afford that right now. – Let’s build blanket forts! (clean them up afterward and you’ll be her hero.)
Don’t be a fixer.
As men, the desire can be to see a problem and fix it. My own husband has always been a fixer. However, sometimes a woman wants to be heard, have a chance to vent, and not get offered any solutions.
Sometimes we already know what to do. Sometimes there is no changing it. Sometimes she just needs to vent.
Instead of being a fixer, wait for the words, “Will you please help” or “What should I do?” If you don’t hear her ask you directly for help, let her vent. It could change her day.
It can be so hard to remember to stop and encourage the people you love most. That said, it is so needed. Your wife may not ask for it, but she needs your encouragement.
Thank her for cleaning.
Tell her she’s doing great raising the kids.
Compliment her cooking.
Thank her for being willing to be up all night with the baby.
Tell her how great she does with meal planning.
Whatever the encouragement may need to be, find a way each day to tell her that what she does matters. She needs to hear it.