As I was thinking about balance in marriage, I tried to imagine what this looks like.
Is it marital equality—where each person does his or her share, where all work inside and outside the home is evenly distributed?
I think the reality of that picture—if we can even fathom it—is as much of a unicorn as the reality of a woman who deftly does it all.
No woman can do it all. And no marriage can be quantifiably balanced.
In fact, I was grateful for the wisdom once shared to me: keeping score (of who has done the most chores, of who works hardest, of who slept the least, etc.) is not worth it. It’s never enough (for anyone), and no one wins.
If I start to feel that comparison creep into my marriage, it’s usually a symptom of something greater—my heart condition.
As a quick disclaimer, let’s be clear that only God can fully satisfy us. If we’re looking for that in our spouse, we won’t find it. If I’m feeling a little self-pity about my “too much to do” list at home, probably I’m not feeling loved. And when I’m in *that* place, I need to check the condition of my heart and remember who I am in Christ.
Gary Chapman’s, The Five Love Languages may be cliché by now, but they are all widely accurate for relationships. Below is a list of the languages, but if you’re not familiar with them, you can find a description of each here:
- Physical Touch
- Quality Time
- Acts of Service
- Words of Affirmation
If your marriage feels out of balance—or if you feel like you need to move the focus of the fulcrum over your marriage in this season, maybe that starts with meeting your husband’s love language.
Howell and I are both big quality time people, so maybe we’re fortunate that our languages speak to each other. And we’ve learned if we schedule too many social nights away, we’ll both feel disconnected and starved for some QT.
But what if your husband craves acts of service? Is there something you can do for him around the house to fill his tank? Make his favorite meal? Help him with yard work?
What if your husband craves physical touch? Can you make time for sex and intimacy—or find ways to sneak in a hug or kiss even if you’re busy cooking dinner or chasing a toddler?
And what if your tank feels low too?
You might ask yourself if you’re putting unreasonable expectations on your spouse. And then communicate to him (respectfully!) what you need.
As with breaking any cycle, the first move is the hardest. But if you feel you need to bring balance back to your marriage, start by first determining what you can do to fill your husband’s love tank.
Do you need to check the condition of your heart today? What is one thing you can do today to fill your husband’s “love tank”?
This post was written by Laura Brandenburg. To read more about her, click here.