If there’s one thing that we often overlook in our relationship, it would be the support we give to our spouse. Your mind might already be running, “Are you kidding me, Lili? I support my husband in every single way!” See, that’s the thing. Most of us feel that we are already doing enough to show our spouse that we support them. But what matters is not what the giver feels, but rather, what the receiver feels.
Support can mean all sorts of things. It can be as simple as walking into that iPhone shop with him even when your bank account can barely keep you alive. Or it can be as complex as moving to a different city.
What I want to make clear though, is that, supporting your spouse does not necessarily mean having to make a sacrifice every single time, nor does it mean you have to say yes without fail.
Instead, being able to support someone often starts first from being able to fully understand where they’re coming from.
The easiest type of support anyone can think to give is emotional support. Yet, it could easily be the hardest one to pull off. First of all, men and women need different responses from their spouse when they need emotional support. Women tend to want to receive sympathy and have her feelings heard, and often, she would provide the same kind of support to her husband. On the other hand, it is natural for men to want to offer a solution to a problem that their wives are currently facing, and often, they do not like to talk to their wives about their own problems if they see no possible solution in sight.
The key to offering good emotional support though, is to not play down your spouse’s feelings. Those feelings, no matter how trivial, are real. Therefore, if you can’t sympathize, at least just listen.
For more understanding on this, click here.
For most of us, we got married when our careers barely kicked off. That gives us the privilege of discovering our spouse’s aspirations with them over the years. Sometimes, their aspirations do not affect us, but not so rarely, they actually do. Sometimes, a spouse wants to quit a well-paying job to start a business from scratch. Other times, a spouse wants to take up a position that would require the whole family to move, with one having to quit their current job.
Marriage life is never simple, but it is in those tough times that you both get the chance to show how much love you have for each other.
So how do we show our support for our spouse’s aspirations, be it career or anything else? It is different for every couple, that’s for sure, as there are countless variations of possible scenarios. But what I can say is that:
First, you show your support and tell your spouse you understand how important this decision is for him/her.
Second, discuss the necessary changes that would need to be done, given that the both of you agrees with your spouse’s decision. (Of course, it is wise to agree first and see the pros and cons later)
From there, you and your spouse would realize together whether it is a good decision or not.
This is different from not agreeing straight out, and then give the pros and cons.
What your spouse needs to hear is that you want the same thing. Your spouse will appreciate you trying to work it out, even if it doesn’t work out.
Wants and Needs Support
And then there are minor things that you might even overlook. Things like your wife asking you to join her yoga session or your husband asking you to join him at the gym. Do you say yes or do you say no?
Again, this is different for every couple. But as long as you can agree more than disagreeing, you’re good.
Lili is a wife and a mum to 3 boys. An aspiring writer. Adores creativity, art and beautiful creations. Dog lover. Gentle-parenting follower. Follow her parenting journey at http://www.happywehappyfamily.com where she writes about family happiness and how to stay connected to our spouse and kids.