When we’re married, we want other people to know it!
Other people need to see that you are rock solid.
Why? When other women see your husband, you want them to know–“he’s off limits”. That reduces stress for him because of awkward encounters, and reduces jealousy for you. And when other men know that your husband is in a great marriage, they’re less likely to pressure him to do things you wouldn’t like, such as go to a bachelor party with strippers (My husband is NEVER invited to those, and is often asked to make sure they don’t happen), and they’re more likely to ask your husband for advice on keeping their own marriages together.
The problem is that while we may totally love our husbands, so much of our lives in the modern world are spent apart.
So today, for Top 10 Tuesday, let’s look at 10 ways you can make sure that everyone knows your husband is happily married.
One BIG caveat, though: My goal in this post is not to help jealous women work overtime or get even more jealous. If you’re the jealous type, that needs to be dealt with first. This post is also not really intended for couples who are just getting over affairs where a husband is trying to rebuild trust. You can’t force trust, and you can’t force your husband to not do anything bad. I do write plenty of posts for women in difficult marriages, but this one really isn’t one of those.
My goal here is just to suggest some good, common sense guidelines for how we as women in good marriages can support our husbands and know what’s happening in their lives so that we make social encounters much easier for all of us. So let’s jump in!
1. Socialize with His Co-Workers and Their Spouses
When we lead two completely separate lives–his work, your life together–or even three–your work, too!–it’s all too easy for marriages to drift. So as much as possible, take your lives and combine them! His work world, your work world, and your personal life can all become part and parcel of the same thing.
Invite some of his co-workers and spouses over for dinner (and this doesn’t need to be intimidating. I’ve made spaghetti when people came over for dinner before! The big thing that people seem to enjoy is board games or cards afterwards). Host a barbecue in the summer. If you’re going to the beach as a family, maybe invite a family from his work along, too.
My husband works in a department with 8 females. It’s him and 8 women. A lot of people would say, “He should never eat a meal with a woman or ride in a car with a woman.” But that’s completely impractical and pretty nigh impossible in his job. But what we can do is just make sure that all of those women know me!
And if you work outside the home, you can do the same thing with your work colleagues, too. Introduce them to your husband, and socialize together. That also can help avoid any awkwardness at work of men hitting on you or texting you!
2. If he has subordinates, do kind things for them
If he has a secretary, or a receptionist that usually answers the phone, get to know her on a personal level. Ask about her life so you can chat when you call your husband at work. Don’t be a stranger. If you do this, you’ll likely feel much less jealous of the women your husband works with (if you’re the jealous type). Putting a face and a personality to a name often kills jealousy. And make sure to remember his subordinates’ birthdays, and think of them at Christmas! And know their kids’ names, too. The nicest thing you can do for anyone is to remember their children.
This kind of relationship was often automatic in days gone by. Today, with cell phones, we tend to talk to our husbands directly rather than going through the receptionist. In some ways we’ve lost the opportunity to connect. So go out of your way to get to know his subordinates, because it does matter!
3. Bless the Workplace
Does he work entirely in a male environment? Every now and then send some baking to work with him. It sounds corny, but it keeps the guys there thinking, “he is a lucky man!” Your husband will become the go-to guy for all relationship problems, which is a great outreach opportunity. Find out when the guys’ birthdays are and send cakes for each birthday. You’ll become known as the birthday lady, and everybody will love you.
4. Show up at work and surprise him!
Every now and then, stop by and take your husband to lunch. Then when you drop in, say hi. Talk to people on a personal level. I don’t mean pry; I just mean be a friend. Make an honest effort to care about the people that he spends time with.
5. Attend work functions
I have gone to some of my husband’s work functions and hated them. I was the only non-medical person there, so I didn’t understand the vast majority of the conversations and felt left out. I’m not naturally good at small talk.
But you know what? That’s where I met all of these people that I had heard so much about! And it meant a lot to Keith that I was there. So go to the Christmas parties–even if there will be a lot of drinking (you can even bless people by driving them home). Go to the summer barbecues. Yes, they may be boring. Yes, they may be crude. But how can we make an impact on the world if we never meet anyone?
6. Host “Guys’ Nights” at Your Home Occasionally
My youngest daughter’s boyfriend plays poker with the guys once a month. They don’t play for major money–I think it’s like $5 each and they play with nickels and dimes. It’s about having fun together, not gambling.
You may not want them at your home all the time, especially if you have little kids. But every once in a while, volunteer to host just so that you can say hi to his friends and be kind to them.
7. Does he have a hobby? Go watch or attend occasionally (but not always!)
Does your husband play on a softball league in the summer? Does he enjoy watching high school football? Does he like going to car shows?
Every now and then go with him. Not every time (guys seriously need guy time, and it’s good if you can bless him with that!). But if you can go sometimes, just to open yourself up to his world and understand him better, that can help you to know a different side of him, too!
8. Volunteer in the same area at church
You may have different spiritual gifts, but one of the best things my husband and I have done is to volunteer together at church. Then we’re really seen as a “unit”! We spent six years running one of the youth programs at our church when our children were younger, and there were other couples who helped out, too. Those couples (and some of the single people, too) naturally became our “small group”.
When you volunteer together, people get to see how you interact together, and that can be a powerful witness. But I also find that my volunteer time at church is one of the most important aspects of my life. When we can share it together, then I don’t have to try to explain something. He already knows, because he was there!
9. Reach out to his family and find a kindred spirit–or at least an ally
Maybe you don’t get along with his family the best. Maybe you find them overbearing, controlling, or even downright miserable. But his family is a big part of his life. Can you identify one person that you more naturally connect with? Then try to get together with that person a little more regularly. It helps you make inroads into his family, and it may stop you from feeling like an outsider.
10. Support him on social media
Finally, let other people know how proud you are of your husband. I don’t mean posting tons and tons of pictures together with him with the caption “Best husband in the world! I love this man!” That’s great occasionally, but we all know women who do that constantly, and it can seem a little bit forced. But occasionally posting a picture or a status when he’s reached a milestone or done something amazing? That’s great. Remember: Men thrive on appreciation almost more than love. They don’t just want to know that you love them; they want to know WHY you love them. So show the world why you’re proud of him!
Do you know what these 10 things do when you take them together?
They make sure that you’re part of your husband’s whole life. You’ll know more about each other so you can stop the drift.
He’s more likely to talk about you at work if other people know you. If his friends are more likely to ask how you’re doing, then he’s more likely to think about you during the workday or during his hobby time, too. And the same goes for your workplace!
All of these things may sound like a lot of work, but I don’t think they are. And as you reach out, you become a real person to the people your husband works with and has fun with. That way neither of you is separating your work lives and your personal lives. And if his coworkers and friends like you, and your coworkers and friends like him, it’s far less likely any awkwardness or even emotional entanglements would start. And one more major plus: if either of you ever does anything to jeopardize your marriage, then you know coworkers and friends will yell at you for it!
Let me know in the comments: Do you make a deliberate effort in any of these ten areas? What’s ONE of these areas where you could really grow? Tell us how these things have made a difference in your marriage!