John M. Gottman, relationship expert and author of The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work said, “What can make a marriage work is surprisingly simple. Happily married couples aren’t smarter, richer, or more psychologically astute than others. But in their day-to-day lives, they have hit upon a dynamic that keeps their negative thoughts and feelings about each other from overwhelming their positive ones. Rather than creating a climate of disagreement and resistance, they embrace each other’s needs.”
In this post I am going to give you tools and advice to help you find those loving feelings that brought you close to your husband in the first place. But let me be transparent with my intentions. If you are looking for someone to tell you to go on more date nights or that your husband must put an immediate end to all of the little things that drive you crazy then this is not going to be the best resource for you.
A happy marriage is built primarily on a healthy relationship. I am going to take you through several foundational components of a thriving long-term relationship. Depending on your personal married life issues you may find that repairing your relationship with your husband is going to take some hard work. The good news is that a strong relationship built on love, trust, and respect is worth the effort.
If you are in the early stages of a relationship or marriage and looking for the best way to built a solid emotional connection that help your husband to truly be your best friend and greatest partner then this post will also be a fantastic resource for you.
I am so looking forward to sharing with you these amazing tips for how to fall back in love with your husband.
This Is All On You And Not About Him At All
Woah! Did you just read that right? How dare I say that this is all about you?!
Hear me out for just a moment. This is incredibly important.
I am not saying that your husband is not responsible or accountable for the quality of relationship the two of you share in marriage. What I am saying is that if you are looking for information on how to fall back in love with your husband then you are the one who is trying to make some changes.
Unfortunately I have yet to unlock the perfect magical spell that makes other people do the things I want them to. It has been my experience that I am the only person I can control. The same, however exasperating it may be, is true for you. Because of that you are only going to read things in this post that pertain to you, the reader. So if you have moments of frustration when you are reading because I do not seem to acknowledge the role your husband plays that is the reason why.
You are the only person you can control. Therefore you are the person I am talking to and sharing my advice with. I absolutely encourage you to share this information with your husband and talk to him about the suggestions. But please know up front that I am addressing you as the wife. That is not because he’s not at fault and not because I have some misguided view that you hold all of the responsibility for happiness in your marriage. It is simply because you are the one reading this and you are the only person you can change.
Leaving The Honeymoon Stage
Gary Chapman shares in his book, Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married, “Research indicates that the average life span of the “in love” obsession is two years…Then we come down off the emotional high and those aspects of life that we disregarded in our euphoria begin to become important. Our differences begin to emerge and we often find ourselves arguing with the person whom we once thought to be perfect. We have now discovered for ourselves that being in love is not the foundation for a happy marriage.”
If you are looking for how to fall back in love with your husband it is very possible that the culprit to blame is that those average two years of honeymoon like bliss have passed. You are no longer floating on cloud nine but instead you are picking his socks up for the hundredth time and wondering why in the world he puts his dirty dishes beside the sink instead of into the sink.
If it is time for you to embrace the second stage of love or if you are just in a season of life where marriage is hard you are not alone. As you read through this post I hope it will become clear to you just how much work every single couple on this planet puts into their marriage.
Embracing The Second Stage Of Love
I have very good news! The honeymoon stage is not the end all be all of your relationship. That’s not to say that the honeymoon stage where you are completely twitter-patted is not fun or exciting. The honeymoon stage is great! But the second stage of love. That deep, purposeful, and intentional love. That is where the real magic happens.
Yes, it does require work to keep emotional love alive. But your work will be rewarded with a lifetime of friendship, care, devotion, and true love. That does not mean there will not be hard times. But it does mean that you’ll have an arsenal of deep commitment at your disposal when you face those unpleasant drudgeries.
If you are looking for resources on how to improve your role in your marriage you can find those here.
Close Friends And Romantic Relationships
At the core of every happy marriage is two people who share a wonderful friendship.
The first thing I would like to point out is that every single couple will at times have negative feelings about one another. Routine married life, household chores, and just being tired at the end of a long day are a few examples of the numerous ways that conflict, agitation, and annoyance can worm their way into your marriage. Every married couple will face these type of relationship problems at one point or another in their marriage. However, it is the way that couples navigate life problems that will make the most difference. A great way to fall back in love with your husband and stay in love is found in the friendship that you share.
If you do not already share a close friendship relationship with your husband then it would be a good idea to start cultivating that friendship. Most marriages start off with two people who share a beautiful and thriving friendship in addition to real love and intimacy. But far too often the blissful honeymoon stage does not last and maintaining a friendship is often one of the first things to suffer.
One of the small things that will make a lasting impression on your friendship is to frequently ask yourself, “Would I speak to my best girl friend this way?” or “How would my close friend feel if I used that tone of voice with her?” Taking a hard look at your role in regards to the friendship you do or do not have with your husband may be uncomfortable. If you begin to feel resentful or put out that is usually a good sign that you need to spend a little time working on your heart in the matter. (Ephesians 4:31-32)
How Do I Become Friends With My Husband?
Here are a few suggestions on ways that you can revitalize and/or cultivate the friendship between you and your husband.
- Plan a fun outing that both of you will enjoy
- Make it a point to share and communicate about topics that are not related to running the home or caring for the children
- Laugh together and be silly
- Discover your husbands love language and find little ways to speak it
- Use some conversation starters to get to know each other better. (These are great no matter how long you have been together)
- Continue reading this post. The other tools and skills you will find here will also go a long way towards growing your friendship.
Turn Toward One Another
Another skill that will help you to fall back in love with your husband is to learn how to turn toward him, rather than away from him, on a daily basis.
Many people are under the impression that a weekend getaway, sharing ice cream by the water, adventuring in a new place, visiting a favorite restaurant, or any number of wonderful things are required when you trying to reconnect with your husband. This quality time may spark some physical affection or take your heart down memory lane but even more crucial is finding ways to connect on an ordinary Tuesday when you both have busy schedules. That is because the ordinary is the scenario you will encounter on a regular basis.
Vacations, trying new activities, and fancy dates are beautiful things. There is nothing at all wrong with including those as a part of your married life. However, it is those moments at the end of the day where you are sitting together on the couch and despite all of life’s pressures knowing that the best thing in the world is right beside you. Life is made up in the simple moments. Your wedding day and first date were precious and extraordinary but learning to connect during the modest moments of life is the real treasure.
So how do you find that?
Start With A Small Gesture
Pay close attention to moments where your husband may be needing a little help in his day to day life. Maybe he is grumbling about changing the oil in the car or sighing heavily at the trash piled up to the ceiling begging to be taken to the curb. Seek out those little moments and then act. Take the initiative and do the small chore for him when you can. The point here is that you see a pain point in his life and you take a small step to improve it.
Another small gesture could come in the form of showing compassion. If you see that your husband is having a difficult day ask him what is wrong and how you can help. A great tool in these types of conversations is to actively listen and be sure to give your undivided attention to your husband. Be certain that he has no doubts that you hear every word to come out of his mouth. Do not interrupt. When he does pause at the end respond first by saying, “That does sound incredibly frustrating. Would it be more helpful to you if I just listen and be a sounding board or would you prefer that I help you brainstorm solutions?”
Your goal here is to find ways to act toward your husband that lets him know that even the little parts of his life matter deeply to you. Let him know that you value him. Show him that even during the mundane moments of every day life he matters to you on a deep level. Remember, you are not looking for big showy Hollywood worthy actions. Aim every day to find small gestures you can take. If a total outsider, maybe an alien from a planet far away, were to get a peek into a day in your life would they know that your husband is a priority? That is what you are aiming for.
Learn To Apologize
Is there a wrong way to apologize? I would argue, yes.
Here is the roadmap for how to apologize effectively:
- Give or show remorse
- Accept responsibility for your actions/words/inaction/etc
- Express a desire to repair the hurt and/or change your behavior
- Request forgiveness
You can see by reading these four steps that “saying sorry” is more than a half-hearted mumbling of the two words “I’m sorry”. In any relationship, including in marriage, there will be times that you will need to apologize to another person. Knowing how to apologize effectively shows respect and helps the relationship to grow, rather than wither, during hard or hurtful moments.
Holding on to grudges and keeping a mental list of the wrongs will damage your marriage. If you are committed to learning how to fall back in love with your husband and nurture your marriage then learning how to apologize is a very important step.
Take some time to think about the last time you apologized to someone. Any person you have a relationship with will work it does not specifically need to be your husband. How did that apology look? Did it include all four of the steps listed here? Why or why not?
When was the last time that someone apologized to you? Again, this does not need to specifically be your husband. Did that apology include the four steps listed here? If not, would you have felt differently if it did?
Forgiveness Is A Choice Not A Feeling
It is not uncommon to believe that in order to forgive someone, including your husband, you must let go of the hurt in order to restore feelings of love. However, letting go of the hurt is not the same thing as forgiveness.
Forgiveness is not a feeling.
Forgiveness is a decision.
In scripture we learn that forgiveness is “to take away” or “to pardon”. You can read this in Psalm 103:12 where it says, “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he (God) removed our transgressions from us.” When we ask God for forgiveness He pardons us. Once he has pardoned us He will never again hold that transgression against us.
That does not mean that God has forgotten what we did. God does not forget. That does not mean that God was not hurt by our decisions. Forgiveness is not taking away a memory or taking away a hurt.
Scripture instructs us to forgive others in the same way that God forgives us. Again, that does not mean that we do not have a memory of the offense. It does not mean that we are no longer feeling hurt by the offense. Rather, forgiving someone means making a decision to pardon them and to never again hold that transgression against them.
I believe it is also important to note here that forgiveness does not rebuild trust. If your actions, or your husbands actions, have caused a lack of trust that trust will need to be restored. You can absolutely forgive someone, meaning you will not hold their actions against them, and still need to work to rebuild trust. It is also possible to forgive someone without reconciling the relationship. Choosing to forgive someone does not mean that you choose to continue forward with that relationship.
Forgiveness is a decision. Forgiveness is not a feeling. And forgiveness, while it does not remove memories or hurt, is the first step towards restoring love.
A very crucial note on forgiveness, hurt, and love
This information about apologizing and forgiveness is in no way applicable to an abusive situation or abusive marriage. If you are being abused either emotionally or physically please seek help from a licensed therapist/counselor, trusted friend, pastor, or the local authorities.
You can get information for help with an abusive relationship online at thehotline.org or by phone at 1-800-799-7233
Eat Dinner Together
You may be wondering why eating dinner together is going to help you learn how to fall back in love with your husband.
In the United States less than one third of families eat dinner together regularly. Of those that do eat dinner together regularly half of the families have the television on during the meal.
Harvard School of Education is quoted saying, “Regular family dinners are associated with lower rates of depression, and anxiety, and substance abuse, and eating disorders, and tobacco use, and early teenage pregnancy, and higher rates of resilience and higher self esteem.” They also share that there have been more that twenty years of dozens of studies documenting the benefits of family dinners for physical and mental health. With all of these amazing benefits backed by over two decades of research it is no small wonder that eating dinner together as a couple, and as a family, will help to improve your marriage.
Another added benefit of family dinners is the positive impact it will have on your children as well. If you are concerned that eating dinner together as a family will be difficult to accomplish take heart knowing that teenagers, arguably the most stubborn of us all, rank family dinner as high on the list of things they would like to do.
Dinner is a wonderful time to build or rebuild connection.
Create Goals Together
It can be well supported that part of the meaning we find in life is in the goals we strive to achieve. When you begin to explore the idea of goal setting with your husband it will enable you to learn and discover important parts of him. This uncovering of his desires, dreams, and ambitions can have a profound impact on your marriage.
Sharing in this way will increase the intimacy and friendship that you share with your spouse. But taking it a step further by working together to achieve shared goals will improve and refine your marriage. Together you will become a team working together.
In my own marriage this sort of goal achievement has also resulted in some silly inside jokes and lots of laughter. Both in fun times when we are playing a game or in more serious times when we are planning our future we say to each other “#TeamGraves”. I no longer even remember why the cheer evolved from just “Team Graves” to “#TeamGraves” (and you have to say it as ‘Hashtag Team Graves’) but it never fails to make us smile.
Use your own last name in place of ours and let it become your motto and encouragement as well. Cheer each other on by saying, “#Team___”
Support Your Husbands Contributions In Your Marriage
The perspective that you have on your husband’s role in your marriage is going to make a great impact on how much respect and care you show him in the marriage. It does not matter if you and your husband share a more traditional or a modern view of marriage. What does matter is the support you provide to your husband for the part that he plays and what he brings to the table.
I do not mean to say that you have to see eye to eye with your husband on every single aspect of parenting, spiritual life, or financial decisions. I am also not talking about who washes the dishes or pays the bills. Instead, I am referring to the expectations you and your spouse have for one another as far as what you contribute to the overall marriage.
Show your husband with your actions and words that you appreciate and support his efforts in fulfilling his role. Depending on the dynamics of your marriage and what his role is that will look different for each couple. But making an effort to show that appreciation to him is key.
Create Moments Of Connection
A moment of connection can be most easily found in the traditions or rituals that every family shares. This is typically a structured event that everyone enjoys and depends on. These traditions and moments of connection will strengthen your sense of togetherness and love.
When you are seeking out ways for how to fall in love with your husband again be sure to take a look at your family traditions and those opportunities for connection that the two of you have. Thinking about these rituals or traditions may make you remember moments from your own childhood. You might immediately think of Christmas morning or a special birthday breakfast. When you are working to establish traditions with your husband and the family you share together remember that he too has memories and ideas from childhood on how certain special occasions are handled.
Discussing holidays, reminiscing about your childhoods, and working together to build ideas for the memories your children will cherish and hold dear is a great way to spend quality time together and grow closer. Creating these moments of connection and traditions do not only need to involve holidays or special events. Those are certainly a part of them but there are other times you can look at as opportunities for connection, rituals, and traditions.
Moments To Consider
- Dinner at home
- Bedtime/bath time with children
- Date night
- Morning or evening routines
- Going to bed at the same time
- Child’s activities
- Exercise or physical activities you do together
Sex and Sexual Intimacy
Clutch your pearls because the Christian blogger is going to talk about sex… on the internet.
It would be ridiculous to attempt to write about how to fall back in love with your husband and not mention sex and the sexual intimacy that is shared between a husband and wife. There is so much that can be covered on the topic of sex and far more than I can hope to touch on in this post. I want to start by saying that if you struggle with seeing sex as a positive, fun, and exciting aspect of marriage that God one hundred percent wants you to partake in I recommend reading The Good Girl’s Guide To Great Sex by Sheila Wray Gregoire.
Sex is great. God created sex to bring us together. Sex is something that you and your husband have that is just for the two of you. But let’s be honest sometimes in the messy world of motherhood and just life it can be difficult to make sex a priority. When you are struggling to find those lovey dovey feelings for your husband it can seem impossible to consider opening yourself up and being so vulnerable as to have sex with him. Letting him in that way, physically as well as mentally, feels unfeasible and out of the question.
How Can You Boost Your Sex Drive With Your Husband?
The advice that I am about to give is ONLY in the context of a respectful and caring relationship. Under no circumstances should this be applied to a situation involving sexual abuse, sexual coercion, sexual trauma, or any situation in which you are not being respected, loved, and valued both in and out of the bedroom. If you are being pressured to have sex, to have more sex, or to engage in any kind of sexual activity you do not wish to engage in then you are experiencing abuse.
Having more sex is an obvious way to increase your intimacy, both in and out of the bedroom, with your husband. However, what do you do when you just are not feeling super lovey dovey in the bedroom department?
Understanding the female arousal cycle or sexual response cycle is a great place to start. Sex in real life is nothing like it is on television or movies. Media, and especially pornography, portrays sex as two people who are crazy turned on before they even begin kissing or touching. That just does not match up with how the female arousal cycle actually operates. Women frequently experience desire before they experience excitement and then arousal. Others experience excitement, then desire, and then arousal. The important thing I want you to take away from this is that the overwhelming majority of women are not immediately aroused before any touching, kissing, or foreplay begins.
When you crawl into bed at night do not anticipate that immediately your clitoris and nipples will become erect and you will be well lubricated and aching for your husband to touch you. Those are all the signs of arousal and as we just learned arousal does not come first for women. Instead you will likely need to let your body and mind warm up to the idea so to speak before reaching arousal. So if you are struggling to “get in the mood” take some time to consider what being in the mood does and does not look like for you. And take comfort knowing that immediate arousal is not required in the way that media would have you believe.
Again, please know that this willingness to explore and warm up to sex is only in the context of a healthy relationship. In no way should you take this as advice to just suck it up and have sex. If you are being pressured in that way please seek help from a licensed therapist/counselor.
How To Fall Back In Love With Your Husband
Finally, I want to encourage you to pray. Prayer should never be considered as petty or unimportant. God cares deeply about the desires of your heart.
For resources on prayer:
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