Your wife has chosen a worthy occupation, one that hardly gets any recognition or respect in this day and age. She chose to give up pay, promotion, autonomy to stay home with your children. If things have been a little bumpy or if you want to keep things running smoothly, here are a few things to keep in mind. Now, the same applies to WOHMs or WAHMs but since I am a SAHM, I speak from that point of view. Enjoy!
1. She’s your wife. not your employee, not your housekeeper, not your mother. She is your wife and please remember that. She wouldn’t be a mother, you wouldn’t be a father if she wasn’t your wife first.
2. Never stop courting. If it’s starting to feel like you are living with a roommate rather than your wife, you might have stopped courting her. Women love romance and love the feeling of being swept off their feet (why else would Hollywood keep putting out those gag worthy romantic comedies??) Think about the days when you were trying to win your wife’s heart, what did you do then? Keep it up! Little things will make her feel special, loved and when a wife feels loved… there’s lovin’ in return, if you know what I’m sayin’
3. Help out without being asked. This might be the hardest one because you might see your wife’s job as encompassing all of the housekeeping duties as well, but let’s think about this together. While your day ends when you leave the office, your wife is essentially at work 24/7/365 and her primary work is that of child care. The rest… icing on the cake. But don’t get me wrong, she wants to have the immaculate, perfect house and the immaculate, perfect children but it’s not going to happen and it hurts her. (It’s been said that if you want an always clean house, don’t have kids under the age of 5) Your running the vacuum or finishing the dishes or mopping the floors or taking the kids for a walk after dinner is huge to her and makes her feel loved… and you know where that leads…
4.Support her. And I don’t just mean monetarily. If your wife has goals, dreams, help her fulfill them. Don’t just knock them down as being impractical.
5. Validate her. Being a stay at home mom can be a lonely job. Even if there is some adult interaction during the day, she still spends the bulk of her day around littles. It’s the only job in the world where no one tells you that you are doing a good job. Sure, your kids are well dressed and well mannered and that is a reflection of parenting but nothing will mean more to your wife than if you tell her how important she is to you and to your family and how you couldn’t imagine not having her around. That there is no one out there who can do the things that she can do. And top that off with a hug. A nice, long 30 second hug.
Marriage is a partnership and having kids just enriches the adventure. But like everything in life, it needs effort. If your job is getting more of your effort and time than your marriage, you might want to do a little of looking within to see where your priorities are.
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Cor 13:4-7)
Coming soon… a letter to SAHMs!