First, I have to tell you wonderful women that I started off the day with a song in my heart. Last night a friend and I got together for tea, and through the course of several nuanced conversations we realized that we were both higher drive wives! Do you realize what this means? For the first time in my life I have a touchable friend who is in the same boat as me.
I am humbled by God’s gift to me in this amazing woman – and it makes it so much sweeter to write to you today because she is the woman who stands in for all of you. All of you who are becoming my sweet friends in the journey. And as much as I can’t see you, I know that you too are a real, living soul who I desperately wish I could have coffee with. I will say that 1 million times on this blogging journey because it is true. I write because I don’t get to talk to you face-to-face.
As my new-found “spicy” friend and I were talking last night, she said something that struck me, and I wanted to invite you into our conversation today.
“I was unprepared for the amount of emotional energy and connection my husband would need from me.”
O my goodness, my heart completely echoes that sentiment! Before I was married, the message I heard regarding my husband’s heart was that he would primarily want sex as a point of connection, and that it would lead to him feeling closer to me and opening up. For both my friend and I this has proven to be untrue. Our husbands need us to connect with them on a deep, emotional, heart-level before we engage in sex. As higher drive wives, we are the ones who find sex to be the doorway opening up and feeling close. We are the “reverse” of the picture of the majority of marriages. And it can be so, so hard to wrap our minds around this and to begin to respond to our husbands in loving ways that support who they are. We are challenged to find ways to strengthen and encourage their masculinity as it presents itself in a different picture than so many others.
Taking care of my husband’s emotional needs has been a steep learning curve for me, and taken a lot more selflessness than I thought. Learning to listen to his heart, and share my own, is a choice. I can emasculate him by wondering why he is made this way, or I can rejoice in the fact that my husband wants and needs to connect emotionally to me. He needs to hear how I am doing. If I seem far away, or if I haven’t checked in and told him what I am thinking about, pondering, concerned about, worried about – then he begins to feel like we are distant. I can be happily humming along doing my thing for much longer than he can before he needs to come back to our marital “home base” and check in. For him, if we aren’t emotionally connected then having sex is difficult.
As a higher drive wife, I can grow sad that I am once again having to initiate sex. I can grow frustrated that we aren’t “normal”. Or I can grow up and realize that our marriage is God’s gift to make me holy. I can leave behind self-centeredness and choose my husband above all others. I can rejoice in the man God has given me to, in our unique marriage and our beautiful journey. And that means I choose to tell him how I am doing, what I am thinking, what is going on. I choose to dig deep and uncover the treasures of his heart. I choose to give him the gift of my mind and my time. Because even though he wants us to connect, there are times he doesn’t have the words to wrap around his experiences and emotions. So I choose to take the time to wait silently for him to answer. I let him mull over a question and then respond. I choose to make a cup of tea and sit with him, patiently, rather than being a busy wife cleaning the kitchen or folding the clothes. I give my husband the gift of my presence. All of me.
Today, dear women, I want to urge you to consider how God has made the man He gave you to. Throw out all of your preconceived notions of how he is “meant” to be, and accept him for who he actually is. Ask yourself what he truly needs from you, his wife. Does he need you to pursue him emotionally? To listen to his stories, and share your own? Does he need you to focus all of your attention on him, to tell him with your actions, “You are the one I choose”? Ask the Lord to give you a selfless heart. Ask Him to guide you into the truth of what it means to go low, be humble and serve.
Praying for you today, dear friends. Praying for your hearts as you go before the Father with your questions. Praying that you would have ears to hear and that you would be quick to obey. Pray for me as well. Pray that I would be obedient in some things that I am dragging my feet in. Pray that I would be willing to let God cut out selfishness from my heart, no matter how painful the process.
I love you ladies. I love being your friend through this wonderful and crazy Internet world. I love hearing your stories and sharing in the hope of what is to come. Thank you for letting me be a part of God’s work in your lives, and sharing in the work He is doing in mine.
P.S. There is still until midnight tomorrow, December 8, 2012 to win one copy of Sheila Gregoire’s book “31 Days to Better Sex” on this post. If you haven’t submitted a comment – do so and enter to win!