We’ve been married over 50 years, and I wouldn’t trade this man for the world. Want to know why? I’ll spell it out in plain and simple language. For all you guys reading this, here’s what it takes to have a happy wife, a happy marriage.
25 things my husband does:
1. He tells me he loves me every day, and I mean every day. Sometimes several times a day.
2. He tells me my hugs give him comfort and energy, all at the same time. He’ll say, “I need a hug,” and I’ll answer, “Me, too.” We like hugs.
3. He’s a gentleman and treats me like a lady — opens doors for me, helps me with my coat, takes my hand when we cross a street, holds the umbrella over me when it rains. Things like that.
4. He takes me on a weekly date. He’s done it for as long as I can remember. He knows how important it is for us to have time together without the kids.
5. He’s willing to take me to a chick flick, and even acts like he enjoys it. I repay him with an adventure movie the next time.
6. He brings me a crispy bean burrito when I’m feeling down. He knows I really like them — it’s healing medicine for me, even though he doesn’t like them.
7. He prays for me and with me. I matter enough to him that he talks to God about me and my needs.
8. He works hard to provide a living for us. I’ve always felt secure in his determination to do this. Not that we haven't had our hard times, we have. But he keeps on plugging along keeping a roof over our heads, for which I am very grateful.
9. He wanted me to be a mom-at-home with the kids. He knew how important that was for our kids and how much it meant to me. I love that he provided that opportunity for me.
10. He encourages me to develop my talents. When I wanted to take oil painting lessons, he made it happen. When I wanted to be a songwriter, he applauded my efforts, even bragged about me.
11. He tells me I’m beautiful, even during those times when I don’t feel one bit attractive. You know, before the makeup or combed hair. It surprises me and makes me happy inside. He makes me want to do all I can to look good for him, and for myself.
12. He likes to buy me new clothes. I love that he’s willing to sit outside the fitting room waiting for me to model my possible purchase and that he’s willing to go to the rack and find a better size, or color. I know that's rare, so I really appreciate it.
13. He wants me by his side. He’ll sometimes say, “Want to go to Home Depot with me?” And I go, most of the time, because I like being with him, even if I don’t care so much for Home Depot. I’m glad he likes to be with me.
14. He takes me to church. If, for some reason I can’t go, he goes anyway because he thinks it’s important. I love his dedication to God. It comforts me.
15. He helps me make the bed. If I get up before he does, which I often do, he makes it alone. That’s right, he enjoys a clean, neat bedroom as much as I do.
16. He cares about others. So often I will see him out helping a neighbor, or offering to visit someone who is ill. His compassion touches my heart and makes him more complete.
17. He loves our children and frets over their sorrows and heartaches. He’s not quite as emotional about it as I am, but his love is deep and real. His heart is with them. He helps them.
18. He adores our grandchildren. I’m so glad because it makes it double the fun to spoil them. And he’s good at teasing and being playful with them. They love it, and so do I.
19. He doesn’t question my spending. He has always trusted me with our finances. As a result, I do my best to be wise with what we have.
20. He has always been faithful to me. For all our married life, I knew he would never cheat on me even when he was away on duty as an Air Force pilot. How did I know? Because of how sacred he considers our marriage vows. He has never wavered in that trust, nor have I.
21. He takes care of himself, dresses nicely and smells good. He’s not one to use cologne because I’m allergic to it. He just smells good naturally, because he’s clean. Of course, he’s not afraid to get sweaty and dirty with a little yard work. I kinda like that smell, too.
22. Which reminds me, I love that he’s willing to do yard work even though it’s on the bottom of his favorite things to do list. He does it for me because I like a pretty yard. He’s willing to work with me on this.
23. He eats my cooking without complaint. I’ve never been a great cook. Some days, I just barely get by. He’s been patient and kind as I’ve learned the tricks of the trade. A least a few of them.
24. He takes care of me when I’m sick. After a difficult surgery when I could not hold back the tears from pain, he held me close and I saw tears in his eyes. He ached to make me all better. His caring helped.
25. He finds his favorite cartoons in the daily newspaper and shares them with me. He laughs, and it makes me laugh.
Not quite perfect
By now you may be thinking my husband is near perfect. Well, he’s not perfect, but the near part is accurate. I could tell about his imperfect side, but why would I even want to go there? My mind is too full of the good things about him. I think that’s what marriage is supposed to be. Just keep noticing the good stuff, and you’ll see all the reasons why you know your husband loves you.
Gary Lundberg is a licensed marriage and family therapist. Joy is a writer and lyricist. Together they write books on relationships, including “Love That Lasts”. Their website is garyjoylundberg.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org