1. When He Needs Space–Sharing office news and the latest neighborhood drama as soon as your husband walks in the door each night can backfire. Most women want to connect at the end of the day. For a lot of guys, they need their space more than ever then. Give the hubby a few minutes to unwind when he comes home. You’re more likely to get his attention if you wait.
2. When He’s Really Listening–If it seems like your husband constantly tunes you out, consider this: Men may look at other areas of the room while still paying attention. Instead of focusing on where your husband’s gaze lands during conversations, notice how he responds to you. If your words are falling on deaf ears, tell him you feel he isn’t listening; then, let him respond. Don’t accuse or blame him.
3. The Most Productive Way to Fight–Arguments happen in any good marriage. But there’s a wrong and right way to fight. Yelling during fights can ultimately lead to divorce-but so does approaching arguments calmly. Ask yourself, “When would I want to have this conversation?” Then, think about what might work best for your husband. Trying to see both your moods can help you find the best time for a good argument.
4. And When an Argument is Going Nowhere–To find out if you’re heading for a purposeful fight, rate the importance of the topic. If it’s about which city to live in-rank it highly. If it’s not-like the color of a new bedspread or what to have for dinner-it may not be worth an argument. Next, determine if you and your husband are ready for the discussion. If either of you are tired, hungry or distracted, don’t get into a conversation about something important.
5. Which Topics Set Him Off–Maybe it’s talking about his mom’s cooking or his late nights at work. Know where the emotional landmines are. If you step on one, you can expect an explosion. Find the right space and time to talk about these issues. Plus, try to understand your husband’s side and then approach him in a non-threatening way. You might say, “I’m not looking to upset you; I’m just looking for a solution to an issue that’s causing me a lot of pain.”
6. How (and When) to Be His Support System–Couples who say they have strong spousal support and face daily stress have 50% higher rates of marriage satisfaction. Wives equate affection and warmth with support, but husbands feel supported when they’re appreciated, needed and getting offers to help with errands. Not sure if your hubby needs you? Ask him.
7. When He’s Not Loving Your Love Life–If your man isn’t showing signs he wants to have sex, then it’s time to rekindle the fire. Couples reconnect when they try out-of-the-box activities together. Plan a date that’ll get you both in the mood.
8. How He Views His Role as Husband and Father–Whether it’s just you two or you plus kids, you and your husband have important family roles. And it’s important that you recognize how he sees his part and respect it. Respecting his role helps him feel close to you. Fight the urge to cast your husband into specific parts without his input. And keep in mind that you don’t always have to be in sync with parenting.
9. What His Dream Job (or Vacation or Car) Is–It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life, but happy couples discuss each other’s hopes and dreams to build and sustain intimacy. Make it a point to regularly talk to your husband about him. Find out his career goals for the next few years-or just hear about his favorite book, TV show or food of the moment. Then tell him more about you. Communication helps you grow with each other instead of apart.
10. That You Don’t Know Everything About Him–No matter how much you communicate with your husband, you can never completely know him, and that’s OK. It’s never good to believe you know anything about your partner for sure and therefore not ask. If you’re growing, you have to continue to catch up with each other. That means there’s at least one enjoyable thing you can do each week: get to know-and fall in love with-your husband all over again.