9 Ways a Husband Can Unintentionally Break His Wife’s Heart


Most husbands don’t go out of their way to hurt their wife’s feelings, but it still happens. Most of the time, it’s unintentional. But a strong marriage requires intentionality from both spouses. If we’re not careful, we can break each other’s hearts without even realizing it.

Husbands, here are 9 ways you might be unintentionally breaking your wife’s heart:

Making plans without talking to her first.

When we marry, we become one. It’s no longer “his” and “hers,” it’s OURS—including our schedules. We must consider our spouse whenever we make plans.

It’s as simple as saying, “Honey, some of the guys are wanting to get together and watch the game this Wednesday night. Do you care if I go?” This one simple step of consulting her first will help your wife know that you consider her in all things, and you respect her thoughts and opinions in all matters. Nine times out of ten, she will probably say, “Sure. Go ahead,” but sometimes, she will remind you that you both already have something on the agenda. Either way, you are showing her love and respect by consulting with her first before making your own plans, and this will keep your marriage strong.

Failing to notice and compliment her when she changes/improves her appearance.

A wife wants to know that her husband still desires her and finds her attractive. One way that a husband can affirm his wife in this area is to simply notice and compliment her when she changes/improves her appearance. Husbands, be on the lookout for your wife’s new hairstyle, new outfit, or new lipstick. Then, pay her a nice compliment like, “Babe, is that a new dress? It really brings out the blue in your beautiful eyes.” She will love that you noticed, and your complimentary words will make her feel adored.

Speaking harshly to her and about her.

We must never speak harshly to our spouse or talk rudely about our spouse–even if we feel like we are justified. We must treat each other with respect both inside and outside the walls of our home. Harsh words build giant walls between us and make us feel unloved and insignificant.

Husbands, if you tend to yell at your wife or use derogatory words towards her, please STOP immediately. There is a better way. You can stop this negative cycle by choosing to focus on the good and speaking in a loving tone towards her. My husband, Dave, has so wisely said, “The tone of your words become the tone of your marriage.”

If you are having trouble doing this, I highly suggest that you both invest time in working on your communication in your marriage and checking out our resources at xomarriage.com.

Failing to take her out on a date on a regular basis.

Husbands, it breaks your wife’s heart when you don’t see the value in spending some time together on a date night. When you refuse to go on a regular date night due to money or time constraints, etc., your wife will perceive your refusal as you simply not wanting to spend time with her, even if your desire to be with her is truly there. Your actions speak louder than your words. So, guys, please prioritize a date night with your wife. Make room in the budget and schedule. It will do wonders for your marriage and it will help the two of you to reconnect and refuel the romance.

Avoiding meaningful conversation with her.

When your wife asks about your day, she isn’t trying to interrogate you. She just wants to connect with you—all of you. She wants to know about everything—the good, the bad, and the ugly. So, the next time she asks you about your day, don’t just say, “It was fine,” and plop down in front of the TV with a Coke and corn chips. Engage with her. Look in her eyes and tell her what’s on your heart. Listen as she tells you what’s going on with her. This kind of daily conversation allows you both to have a better understanding of what’s going on in each other’s lives.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to veg a little bit in front of the TV, but don’t neglect your wife’s need to connect with you in the process. Give her your BEST time and attention first.

Fulfilling your own sexual needs by using porn.

You may tell yourself that it’s harmless and that nobody is getting hurt, but that is a lie. Porn warps your mind to desire things that no one person can fulfill, and it makes you think that your spouse is less desirable and less sexually fulfilling. So, you continue to go back to porn again and again and again, and you stop initiating sex with your wife. Then, she’s left wondering why you never want her anymore, and the two of you simply “exist” with a sexless marriage—all while you meet your own sexual needs with porn. Sound familiar?

Husbands, if this describes you, please know that you are not alone in this struggle. However, it will tear you and your marriage apart if you don’t stop this habit as soon as possible. Please check out The Naked Marriage podcast for more on this.

Avoiding her phone calls, texts, emails, social media correspondence, etc.

Husbands, you may think that this isn’t a big deal, but it is. The simple act of answering her phone calls, texts, emails, and social media messages lets her know that she’s important to you. Even if you only have a few minutes, your consistent correspondence will keep you both connected throughout the day and make her feel loved and appreciated.

Never saying, “I’m sorry for ____. Please forgive me.”

Everyone makes mistakes, but we must admit fault and seek forgiveness when we’ve failed our spouse. Husbands, when you fail to say you’re sorry and try to brush your misgivings under the rug, this breaks your wife’s heart. She wants to forgive you, but you must admit the wrong and seek her forgiveness first.

So, think about it. Have you hurt her feelings? Lost her trust over something? Lied to her? Kept a secret from her? If so, confess it to God first. Pray for forgiveness. His grace is sufficient for whatever you’ve done. But, as a spouse, you must also go to her, confess what you’ve done wrong, and ask her to forgive you. It might be hard, and she may not take it well. However, a strong marriage is built on truth and honesty. When you bring it out in the open, healing can begin.

Forgetting to tell her something specific that you love about her every day.

This may sound super simple, but it’s something that we often forget to do, the longer we are married. We assume that our spouse knows just how we feel, so we don’t say it out loud. A wife’s primary need is to feel loved and adored, so when she rarely hears a heartfelt “I love you” from her husband, it can be heartbreaking.

Husbands, your wife wants to know that you’ve still got it for her. So, each day, make it your quest to tell her one specific thing you love about her. Tell her how much you love hearing her infectious laugh. Tell her how much you appreciate how hard she works for the family. Tell her that she never ceases to amaze you with her expansive knowledge. Whatever “it” is—tell her about it. She will never tire of hearing your encouraging and affirming words, and it goes a long way in mending a broken heart and cultivating a strong marriage.

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