Wednesday, April 27, 2011

How to Bring the Romance Back

Sheila is talking about romantic fantasies for Wifey Wednesday (on her blog To Love, Honor, and Vacuum) today, and I decided to pipe in with my two cents!

I'll be honest, I'm not too familiar with the phenomenon she's referring to. I can't say that I notice a lot of women mooning over certain celebrities or athletes. What I do notice, though, is a whole lot of women fantasizing over their girlfriends' husbands.

I'm not talking sexual fantasy, but emotional fantasy. I wish my husband would bring me flowers like hers does. Why won't my husband ever watch the kids and give me a day off like hers? Oh, her husband is so spiritual, such a leader - how I long for my husband to be that way.

How about this one: I'm so unhappy in this marriage, but I don't believe in divorce. I wonder what it would be like if my husband were just...gone? If he died, I would be free to marry someone really right for me.

Perhaps that last thought isn't as common as the earlier ones. But it's not as uncommon as you might think.

Here's the deal, friends - the grass may look greener over there on the other side, but in reality the grass is always greenest where it's been fertilized, watered, and mowed. Tending to the lawn takes time, effort, money, attention, and some hard work. If we want our marriages to look like hers - the one who gets flowers and is always smiling and touching - we need to put in the same effort she does. Maybe more.

Here is one small thing we can all do to bring the romance back to our marriages - be his biggest fan.

Cheesy? Maybe a bit. Effective? Absolutely.

How to be his biggest fan:

1. Thank him when he does something around the house. EVEN if it's something that you expect him to do (like taking out the trash). Here's a little Jeff Foxworthy bit that talks about men's need to be appreciated - it's exaggerated, hilarious, and true. (Go ahead and start down at 6:10.)

2. Brag about every sweet thing he does for you to your girlfriends. Eventually, it will get back to him and he'll feel like a superhero.

3. Ask him to help you solve a problem (whether a discipline issue with the kids, something at work, etc.), and actually use his advice.

4. Greet him when he comes in the door! Kiss optional, but recommended.

5. Hang out with him, side-by-side, doing something he enjoys (fishing, fixing the car, watching hockey).

If you're like me, you're probably wondering how the heck this is going to help bring the romance back. You're thinking, Sure, I'll do all that. What's he going to do for me?

Guess what? Marriage is not a 50/50 partnership, where you take turns doing your share and keep score. Good marriages are 100/100. The secret to getting him to give his 100% is deceptively simple. Stop keeping score. Focus on giving your 100% and nothing else.

If you become your man's biggest fan, he will feel valued, appreciated, worthy, and respected. His chest will puff out in pride, because his wife adores him. A man who feels respected and honored is satisfied, filled up, and he will then be ready to pour out. And he will become your romancer.

Here's a great challenge for us wives. (I return to this tool at least once per year, when I need a refresher on being Pat's biggest fan.)

What do you think? Do you believe that your marriage can be transformed by your actions alone? Are you willing to give it a shot?


  1. Tyler, awesome post! Thanks so much.

    I find that people often say a variation of, "well, I'd be happily married to if I'd married HIM" when they look at other marriages. Other marriages look so easy.

    But, like you said, they don't see the work that went into the marriage to make it like it is now. My husband and I have an amazing marriage. But we like to say that we've been married for twenty years, and happily married for fourteen. It hasn't always been easy, and we had to learn so much before we really figured out how to love each other!

    Thanks for linking up to Wifey Wednesday!

  2. Ha! That's what Pat and I say, too. Married for nearly 12 years, happily for the past 6 or 7. :)

  3. #3 is especially difficult for me, as I like to be "in control" of my own life. I don't take advice well. But I'm working on it! And for those times when advice is really not necessary, I'm learning to say, "Honey, right now I just need you to listen as I talk it out, okay? I'm not ready for solutions yet," (Rather than my typical response of being hurt and offended.)

  4. Love this post Tyler! I think comparison is our worst enemy.

    My husband loves words and I confess I am not the greatest at it. So being his biggest fan is not easy for me. I am trying though. ;)

    Thanks for reminding me to work on my relationship.

  5. Thank you for this post. Everyone of your recommendations for improving marriage is true. The world would certainly know us by our love if Christian wives would follow them. Even after 33 years of marriage, I need a reminder like this. Thanks for your visit. blessings, k

  6. Thirty-three years, Karen! Way to go!

  7. Such great, practical ideas- thanks! I printed the 30 day challenge and I look forward to seeing how God will use that in our marriage. Thanks!

  8. This was an awesome post! Just wonderful. I agree wholeheartedly.

  9. Oh, I needed this reminder SO much today! :-) I know it all in my head, but we are in a terribly stressful season right now and I don't WANT to appreciate him/ like him/ be nice to him -- I want him to be doing all of that FOR me! :-) As you said, marriage is 100/100 -- time for me to put on my "big girl britches" and start appreciating and serving and honoring HIM instead of waiting for it to be my turn. (I came over from Wifey Wednesday). Thanks, again, for your godly words!


I am so glad you stopped by! My hope is that we can engage in a conversation together. I love to reply to your comments, but I need your help to make that happen.

If you have a blogger profile, would you consider editing your profile to "show my email address?" Then, when I receive your comment in my email inbox, I can reply directly to you.

Alternately, you can check the box "email follow up comments to..." so that I can reply to you right here. (You will also receive other readers' comments using this method.)

I'm excited to get to know you better!