by Aaron Anderson
It’s tough being a man these days. Modern men are
expected to be sensitive, caring and in tune with their feelings; while
at the same time they’re still expected to be strong, protectors and
able to fix anything that breaks.
Men can’t be too sensitive or they’re
not being good enough protectors. On the other hand, they can’t be too
protective or else they’re not being sensitive enough.
As men, we
try to navigate this balance between being caring and being strong. And
because it can be such a fine line, there are a lot of times we fail.
And there are things we do that are hurting our wives and killing our
Here are five:
1. Not providing the basics for the family
man, it is your responsibility to provide for your family, regardless of
whether or not your wife works. Sometimes this means working a few
overtime shifts so your kids can sign up for that baseball league. And
sometimes this means biting your lip when your boss is being a jerk
because you need the stability for your family. But it makes it all
worth it when you come home at night and see the smiles on everyone’s
Ever since you were a kid, you were
taught to, “Man up,” and, “Don’t cry,” just to accept the fact that bad
things just happen in life. While this is good advice sometimes, your
wife also needs you to be an optimist. Your relationship will need to
rally from all kinds of challenges, failures, hurt feelings and health
problems. Your wife doesn’t need someone to tell her to stop crying, she
needs a shoulder to cry on.
3. Withholding physical affection
Yes, men do
this, too. Physical affection is more than just sex. It includes giving
her hugs before you leave for work, holding her hand in the aisle at the
grocery store and pulling her close to you when you’re watching a movie
on the couch together. If you’re withholding these things from her,
you’re withholding physical affection that she thrives on. The affection
you try to show inside the bedroom will never make up for the physical
affection you show her outside the bedroom.
4. Putting other things first
Of the hundreds of
girls you knew and dozens that you dated, your wife was the one you
picked to spend the rest of your life with. She needs to know that you
still pick her. Every time you check your smartphone when you’re out
together or every time you come home late from work without calling
you’re sending her a message that she’s not important to you.
Consequently, she wonders if you still care about her as much as when
you first got married.
Your work is important, but don’t forget
what you’re working for. Remember that there’s nothing on your phone
that’s more important than what’s going on right around you.
5. Not speaking her language
Women need to know
they are loved and that you are grateful for her. You think you’re
showing love by going to work every day and bringing home a paycheck, so
most of the time you don’t do much more than that (except maybe on
But, she needs more than that to see your love
and she needs you to show her that you’re doing it all for her. So take a
little extra time and do something special. Send her a couple texts
during the day or bring her home some flowers from the grocery store.
You might be surprised at the reaction you get.
Aaron Anderson is a therapist and Director of The Marriage and Family
Clinic in Denver, CO. He is a writer, speaker and relationship expert.
Checkout his blog for expert information on how to improve your