If you are a wife who is married to a man who does not do a lot of talking, this post is for you! Please keep in mind that it is very normal for opposites to attract. Talkative people often marry quieter people. It makes sense.
But sometimes once we are married, we get upset that our husbands aren’t just like us! Or, I felt that way, at least.
Thankfully, we can usually learn to understand and appreciate our husbands. Their differences from us can become a blessing and a big part of the strength of our marriages – if we are willing to offer grace, respect and God’s love.
A few questions to consider:
1. What was he like when you were dating?
2. Is this just his personality? Does he enjoy and need time alone to recharge?
3. Does he speak to anyone else?
4. What was he like growing up?
IF THE ANSWERS ARE THINGS LIKE:
1. He hated talking on the phone when we were dating. He said he didn’t have anything to talk about or he didn’t like talking on the phone.
2. He is always very quiet. He likes to have a lot of time alone.
3. He has a few friends but he prefers to spend his time on his hobbies, work, the computer… he likes being alone. He talks to people at work and church, but feels kind of worn out after a lot of socialization.
4. He spent a lot of time reading or playing by himself as a child.
THEN… he may simply have an introverted personality. His quietness is probably not anything personal against you! 🙂
If he has any issues like Asperger’s, ADD, bi-polar, depression, autism – that is going to take a much greater level of grace, understanding and respect on your part to be a godly wife to him. Be sure you research his condition and seek to understand him and the extra challenges that will be yours as his wife.
***** If there are addictions, violence, infidelity, major unrepentant sin, involvement in the occult or a cult, seriously uncontrolled mental health issues—please get the appropriate help ASAP!
If he used to talk a lot but now he doesn’t, is it possible that he could be feeling unloved or unsafe in some way in the relationship? Or is he dealing with grief, stress, or pressing health issues? If he has gone silent because of these kinds of issues, there are ways for you to seek to be a blessing to him to help him heal.
If he is just introverted, there are still ways to have a beautiful, meaningful, mutual loving and respectful relationship.
HERE ARE SOME THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND, LADIES…
If a man doesn’t talk much before you get married, that is probably how he will be after you marry him!
It is extremely unfair and unrealistic to assume a man’s entire personality will change just because you marry him!
Realize you are going to have to adjust your expectations around his personality and around any wounds he may have. As a Christian wife, you have incredible power in the Holy Spirit to adapt your skills and communications gifts to suit him.
God created the woman to be the husband’s helpmeet. We as women generally have much more flexibility and strength with our verbal skills and communication abilities. We can adjust to the individual qualities, weaknesses, strengths and unique quirks of our particular husbands.
Something that really helped me was to understand that women tend to interpret silence as “hatred.” But most men do not intend silence to mean that they are angry.
There can be exceptions, when a man feels so wounded and unsafe that he stonewalls his wife. Or if a man has anger issues or addictions. But many times, an introverted man is quiet just because that is his personality.
Many men, even those who are not introverted, simply don’t emotionally bond with words. They often bond by doing things shoulder-to-shoulder.
(Shaunti Feldhahn’s book, “For Women Only” can help us better understand our men in this way.)
An introverted husband may love his wife with all his heart, he just doesn’t have a big need to verbalize his emotions and feelings. And he may not feel super comfortable with words or talking about emotions.
It is easier to rest in my husband’s love if I know he loves me, but he just shows love differently.
18 Suggestions for Christian Wives to Prayerfully Consider with a Quiet Man
- Accept that he may have a different love language than you do and that’s okay. Perhaps he demonstrates love without words. If you are able to accept his different way of showing love and appreciate what he does instead of being angry that he doesn’t change, you may discover that he actually loves you dearly and that his love language is a huge blessing to you.
- Commit to learning to understand him better and to see the depth of his love even if he has trouble expressing it verbally. Just because a man is not great at saying, “I love you,” or giving compliments does not mean he doesn’t love deeply and love well. Many men who aren’t big talkers ARE big lovers—they show it in their own ways.
- Don’t expect him to talk like the leading man in a Hollywood romantic chick flick or romance novel. He is a real man. Those fictional men had women script writers. Sometimes Hollywood doesn’t accurately represent the way real men love and relate. You can save yourself a lot of misery if you can lay down unrealistic expectations.
- Be prepared to get a lot of your talking needs met in other places like with your mom, sister, or with some godly girlfriends. Or journal your thoughts and feelings to the Lord.
- You can learn to rest in his love without getting a lot of verbal affirmation or reassurance of his love. Recognize that he probably always feels connected with you, whether you are talking face-to-face or not, unless you are upset with him about something.
- Accept that he may not give a lot of compliments—and appreciate that he probably doesn’t give a lot of criticism, either.
- If he doesn’t appreciate or want a lot of verbal praise, affirmation, or encouragement—learn how to bless him with non-verbal respect—big smiles, possibly hugs if he is ok with that, doing special things for him that he would appreciate.
- Remember that verbally pressuring him or getting upset won’t motivate him to open up.
- Create an emotionally/spiritually safe place for him in case he does want to share. Be relaxed, calm, joyful in Christ, and peaceful.
- If he does share something vulnerable with you, treasure and safeguard what he shares! Don’t use that against him or tell other people about it. Be trustworthy and loyal and he will feel a lot safer sharing his heart with you sometimes.
- Do a heart check and make sure he is not an idol for you. Don’t expect him to meet your deepest spiritual/emotional needs – go to Christ for your deepest sense of security, peace, purpose, and fulfillment.
- Accept him the way he is without trying to control or change him.
- Ask for what you’d like respectfully in a non-blaming, non-pressuring way.
- You can teach him gently, what your needs are – and as he sees that you are delighted when he listens, he will be encouraged to do that more often!
- Thank him any time he does listen or share.
- Let him associate “talking with you” with a positive experience. Be calm, pleasant, and friendly when you share your heart with him.
- Be willing to offer yourself joyfully to him sexually, even if he doesn’t have an hour conversation with you about feelings—realizing that for him, sex IS emotional and spiritual connection with you. Be available to him whenever you can. It is ok to ask for what you need in a kind, friendly way, too. Thank him any time he meets your needs. We have incredible power to bless our husbands sexually. Many times, our husbands feel MUCH more connected to us during and right after physical intimacy. That can be a good time to tell him you’d love to cuddle for a few minutes and share your heart. By sharing your heart, I don’t mean complaining or making demands—but sharing your feelings, your appreciation for him, your day, your dreams, your ideas… . (If your husband has a lower libido than you do, don’t try to force or pressure him into sex. Check out all my posts on that topic here.)
- Avoid to having a BIG TALK about something highly emotionally charged after about 10pm, when one/both of you are sick, tired, super stressed, in pain, or really hungry.
if you need a lot of baby steps to help you treat your introverted, calm, steady guy in a way that helps him blossom, I share all the things it took me years to learn on my own in this one book. There are lots or practical suggestions to help improve your marriage and your level of contentment and peace in your situation.