A common theme in marriage sermons, seminars, and books is the need for a husband to pursue his wife after marriage. They encourage men not to stop studying, romancing, and dating their wife simply because the wedding is over. It is certainly true that a man should still actively pursue their wife after the courtship days, but what similar advice can be given to us wives?
That question came to me after a recent discussion my husband and I were having with a friend. The guy she is dating organized a group camping trip and invited her along. This was her first time sleeping in a tent and she confided in us that she didn’t really enjoy it. She made it clear, however, that she wasn’t going to tell her boyfriend her opinion! In fact, she has plans to go camping again next month. My gut reaction was to tell her to be herself and not pretend to enjoy something just because he does, but before I could verbalize my thoughts Jason shared how that was just like me when I was dating him! (What?! I didn’t follow the brilliant advice that I was about to give!! I don’t believe it!)
He shared how I used to be into football back when we were dating. In his own words, “We used to watch a lot of Monday Night Football back then. Darby would know the teams, stats, and plays. Boy how times have changed.” (Ouch – the truth hurts.) It is true, I used to research football in order to get to know the players. I would passionately cheer as we would watch the games together. On dates I talked about my every growing love of the game. I did this so that I could spend more time with Jason. I knew he wanted to watch football and I figured that I would be able to spend more time with him if I was pretending to want to watch it as well (probably similar to why my friend agreed to go camping again). Shortly after we got married, my true opinions of football surfaced: I don’t understand it, I don’t like it, and I don’t want to watch it. Sure, I have my teams, but even with them I am not passionate about having to watch the game.
I have thought a lot about this over the past few days. If it is so important for a husband to continue to romance his wife – shouldn’t it be equally as important for a wife to maintain her interest in the pastimes her spouse finds fulfilling? While I’m sure not every girl pretends to enjoy a sport or specific activity for her boyfriend’s sake; I do think there is a good percentage of women who changed their tune about something after getting married. Camping, sports, DIY projects, trips to museums, or watching action movies might be a few examples of some things girlfriends do with their boyfriends, but wives don’t do with their husbands.
As a girlfriend I was once very eager to watch and talk football. Now as a wife I avoid both. Certainly my husband didn’t marry me for my sports talk, but that doesn’t negate the fact that I gradually walked away from something we shared in dating. My challenge is to watch and talk football again. I have a desire to share this with my husband because it is important to him and I value my time with him. Instead of working in my craft room while he watches ESPN – I will join him with the eagerness I once had.
Contemplate with me, is there some extracurricular activity that your husband enjoys? If you aren’t already, could you participate in it with him? Allow his interests the opportunity to bring you all together instead of giving you all more time to do “his” and “her” things.