Learning how to respect your husband might be one of the most important skills you can develop in order to improve your marriage relationship. Check out these 25 ways to respect your husband (tied to 25 songs that we don’t necessarily endorse – but some we absolutely do).
- “It Never Hurts to Ask” – Don’t ask him with an attitude, but genuinely, “What do I do, or not do, that makes you feel respected or disrespected.”
- “Take a Look at Me Now” – Your eyes can communicate a thousand words without speaking a single one. Look at him right in the eyes, and give him that look. The one that lets him know you love him deeply. Or, the other one. The one that says, “I want you!” Every man wants to be wanted.
- “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” – Speak about him to others as if he could hear every word. He might not ever find out what you said, but he will on occasion. When he does hear about all the good you said second or third hand, it will make him stand a little taller.
- “Faithfully” –Trust takes a long time to build, but only a moment to destroy. Reserve your most intimate thoughts, looks, and conversations for him. Be faithful to him…always.
- “Details Don’t Matter” – Have you tried to tell a story to a friend only to have one of your kids interrupt you and try to correct some insignificant or irrelevant detail? It doesn’t feel good, does it? Try not to correct him when he’s telling a story even if the details are just a bit off. If the details are significant, comment to him privately.
- “The Champion” – At one time you married him because he was the champion of your heart. Let him know today that’s still the case.
- “You’re the One That I Want” – Let him know he’s the priority relationship. There’s no one else you’re one flesh with. Your kids will eventually leave, but he will be there forever. Let him know he’s most important and show it with how you spend your time.
- “Don’t Stop Believin’” – Believe in him, and let him know you do. You have so much influence over how your man thinks of himself. You can take his confidence from a “5/10” to an “8/10” with three simple words repeated day in and day out. Tell him, “I believe in you!” Call out the man he longs to be and the man God created him to be. Sooner or later he’ll start to believe it.
- “Let’s Get Away From it All” – Calling him out isn’t a community event. Your husband will need your correction, admonition, and instruction at times. However, don’t challenge him in front of your kids, in front of your friends, or in a public setting. Private confrontation is almost always better. When he does need to be corrected, do it privately and respectfully.
- “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” – Praising him is a community event. Catch him doing something good around your friends or your kids and let him know for all to hear. Be quicker to catch him doing something right as opposed to doing something wrong. Go on a “praise hunt” as opposed to a “sin hunt.”
- “I Think We’re Alone Now” – Praising him is not ONLY a community event. Praising your man in public might be more or less impactful depending on his personality. Sometimes your praise is best delivered in a private setting. Tell him you’re proud of him. Tell him you’re glad you’re married to him. Tell him how great of a job he’s doing. Big things, small things, and in-between things. Call him, text him, tell him in person. Make this a habit in your marriage.
- “Don’t Laugh at Me” – Your man will likely do some silly things that tempt you to bust a gut. But, don’t let your laughter lead him to feel a lack of respect from you. Follow his lead when laughing at his blunders. Laugh second, not first. Laugh with him, not at him.
- “Oh be Careful Little Mouth What You Say” (and how you say it) – A common belief is that 55% of communication is body language, 38% is the tone of voice, and 7% is what is spoken. What you say to your man is important, but how you say it and what your body language is communicating is even more important. Watch your tone when you’re talking to him. Look him in the eyes. Give him your full attention. Make steady eye contact. Lean forward to show him you’re really listening. When you speak, make sure you’re using a tone you’d want him to use with you.
- “We (You and Your Kids) Don’t Need Another Hero” – You and your kids don’t need another hero other than your husband. Expose your husband’s good character to your kids by appreciating him in front of them. Let them hear you telling their dad how thankful you are for all that he does for your family. Be as specific as possible.
- “Cheerleader” – One of the ladies I speak with at FamilyLife wrote a great book on becoming your husband’s personal cheerleader. Her encouragement is to cheer him on just like you did your team in high school. The cheerleaders don’t stop cheering when the team is doing bad or after their team has had some losses. They keep cheering. In the same way, keep cheering your husband on regardless of the circumstances and his successes and failures.
- “Let’s Get it On” – Affirm him by letting him know you desire him sexually. More than your man wants to hear “I love you,” he wants to hear, “I want you!”
- “Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby” – Be willing to talk about what happens beneath the sheets. Share your likes and dislikes, and more importantly ask him his!
- “Livin’ on a Prayer” – I heard Louie Giglio say recently, “If we could actually see what happens when we pray, we would never stop praying.” I don’t claim to understand all the ways prayer makes a difference, but I do know it does! Pray for your husband with him and without him and never stop. Instead of pointing out every area you want to see change, start praying about it. It might just be the most significant thing you can do for him and your marriage.
- “I Will Always Love You” – Intimacy is best experienced in an environment of security. Does your husband know you’ll be with him forever? If not, let him know. By the way, this isn’t something once done and forever accomplished, but rather a culture to create. Look for 100 small ways to let him know you’re in this for life.
- “Say, Say, Say” – Talk to him regularly. He won’t always listen, but don’t let his lack of listening hold you back from saying things that need to be said…about you, about him, about your relationship. Part of your role is to submit to him, but don’t let your submission lead to silence… Submission speaks.
- “Ebony and Ivory” – If you haven’t realized it already, you are different from your husband! Not just physically, but emotionally as well. The goal of marriage is not to pursue becoming the same. Don’t try and change him to be more like you, but rather make personal adjustments to accommodate how he’s different than you. If he struggles with listening, try to streamline your conversation. If he prefers a quiet night with the family, order in and rent a movie. Look for ways to occasionally adjust to his preferences and design.
- “Nothing compares 2 U” – Don’t compare your husband to anyone. When he acts like his dad, find a way to tell him without comparing him to his dad. If his best friend is hitting it out of the park in an area where he’s not, tell him without mentioning that friends name. Correction doesn’t need to include comparisons.
- “The Man” – Remind him frequently that he has what it takes. Just like our little boys are looking for affirmation, our husbands need it just the same.
- “Say You, Say Me” – Listen first, then seek to be listened to. Create an environment where your husband can share his wildest and craziest dreams so you can be his sounding board. Ask him questions about his passions for his career, or a possible change of career. Whatever the subject, draw out his inner most thoughts through your penetrating questions and listening ears.
- “Gotta’ Serve Somebody” – The art of marriage is knowing what it looks like to serve your spouse and then actually serving them. Serve your husband every day, even when you don’t feel like it, and especially when he doesn’t deserve it. Serve him sacrificially.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T – It’s not always easy, it doesn’t always make sense, but it’s the foundation of your role as a wife, and your responsibility before God. It’s also one of the most motivating things you can do to encourage your husband to become the man you want, and God wants him to be. Regardless of how your husband responds to your respect, God is saying to you, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Ephesians 5:33b says, “…and let the wife see that she respects her husband.”
Hans and Star Molegraaf founded Marriage Revolution in 2010 and provide help and hope to couples through marriage counseling, events, and resources. They’ve been married for almost 30 years, reside in Houston, TX and have 6 kids.