Messy office

Dude Skill #7: SERVE – Part 4


Continued from my blog posting on this same topic, August 22, 2023.

What Are Some Ways For Husbands To Serve?

Don’t Assume, Ask

It is easy to think that your wife wants to be served the way you like to be served. Don’t just assume that you know what your wife needs or what seems to be service to her. If you wife isn’t responding well to you service, there’s a strong possibility that you’re projecting ways taht you would like to be served onto her. There’s not a right or wrong here; it’s just that different people prefer different kinds of help. She might not care less about your help with a house project, but she would love for you to run a random errand for her.

Own Your Area

Remember that fight Amie and I had over the clutter on the dresser? I just looked at. my nightstand before I got up this morning. It is a haven for mess: a dozen books, various magazines, multiple water bottles, and more than a handful of protein bar wrappers. I went down to my desk in my home office, which was littered with coffee cups and pieces of paper. Then I got in my car to go to an appointment and found more water bottles, sunglasses, and books. It occurred to me that my wife experiences all my messes on a daily basis. A simple way to serve her is to clean up after myself. Whether it’s the dishes, the nightstand, or your man cave or office, be a man and serve your wife well by picking up after yourself.

Acknowledge Her Work

Your wife may have a highly stressful job. My friend’s wife is a major player in a Fortune 500 company. They are juggling the demands of a growing family while both of them are growing their careers. To his credit, my friend acknowledges taht his wife is going through a tough season and is doing good work. Yet research has found taht breadwinning wives still do at least two-thirds of the housework.

Every husband thinks he is working hard until he has to watch the kids by himself. Never a truer statement has been uttered. I discovered this last month when i took all four kids for five days by myself. I came back in sackcloth and ashes, lauding my wife for the demanding job she manages at home.

Recognize Your Wife’s Superiority

Carin Rubenstein, author of The Superior Wife Syndrome, commented: “Husbands tend not to see how much more their wives do, or how much more their wives sacrifice, or how much more peeved and distressed their wives feel.” Husbands have a tendency to misinterpret, misreport, or misunderstand their wive’s superiority. She lists for reasons why guys don’t get it:

  1. Men exaggerate. The issue is not lying. It’s that most guys perceive themselves to be accomplishing a lot. They’re just wrong. “Men are domestic legends in their own mind every time they move a single load of laundry to the dryer, they are doing ALL of the laundry,” Rubenstein said. Every time they scramble eggs on Sunday they are cooking family meals. Indeed, men consistently overestimate their contributions at home in just about every study on the topic.”
  2. Some men are deliberately obtuse. These guys pretend to be less capable than they really are. “Honey, your just better at it” becomes their excuse to avoid responsibility.
  3. Some men are really and truly oblivious. If your are one of these guys, you really need to work on how to change this.
  4. Some husbands feel threatened by their wives superiority. If you are one of these guys, I encourage you to pray and ask God to show you His heart on this topic.

Ask Her!

Many of the paths to serving your wife I’ve mentioned thus far have been indirect — figuring out her love language, developing a bridge activity, owning your area. But perhaps the best route is the most direct one: just ask her what she needs.

As you wife what it feels like to be served. Is it easy or difficult for her to receive help? How did her family members serve one another or not? Connect with your wife’s heart by learning what it feels like when you serve her, not just what she is able to check off her list because you served her. Looking for ways to serve your wife is a discipline that you can practice on a daily basis, such as exercising, eating well, or managing time.

True service has no strings attached, so don’t make your help conditional or pout if you don’t get the affirmation you would prefer.


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