I have observed that it is more often about what men don’t do, rather than what they do do, that causes harm in their marriage, and what they don’t do is take responsibility (show up) for their wives.

So without intending to be critical or judgmental, if I could give a helpful piece of advice, it is to remind men to take the initiative in the marriage relationship. There are a few important areas in which a man ought to take the initiative if he wants to save his marriage.

  1. LOVE YOUR WIFE: There are certain building blocks that for a woman create the sense of being completely loved.  A man must give attention to each of these from time to time.  A man loves his wife by “giving himself” to her.  So, if a man will decide (and that is an act of will) to love his wife, his emotions will follow.  A man gives himself to his wife by taking the initiative in these areas:-
  • Initiate Romance: Plan dates, outings and alone time etc;
  • Initiate time to talk daily: Make an appointment if necessary. (Note – this is much harder and more important than it sounds);
  • Be responsive if asked to do something. Don’t make her nag you;
  • Show interest and concern about her health, appearance, hair, perfume, clothes and children etc. Her concerns should concern you because it says, “no one is more important to me than you”.
  1. Take the initiative to make DECISIONS. Don’t leave the decision-making about hard things like children, health, school and finances to your wife.  Do it properly, listen, consider options, present facts and reasons, but ultimately make the decision.
  2. Initiate ACTION. Set out and act on practical steps to carry out the decision. Make sure you are ultimately responsible to finish what you start.
  3. Take the initiative to INVEST in your wife. This is done by expressing words of gratitude and encouragement and praise.
  4. Take the initiative to PROTECT your wife. If she is afraid of you or your next get rich scheme, then that is a sure sign you need to work on becoming a better husband. There are three main areas in which a husband should be protective:-
  • Financially: Agree on a family budget, savings plan, savings goals and stick to it.  Financial mismanagement is a form of unfaithfulness which produces anxiety and conflict;
  • Her heart: Don’t flirt with other woman;
  • Be watchful and block the entry into your home of harmful influences which typically come from people, substances (commonly used to seek comfort or to hide away for a while) ideas and opinions.


David Madsen is an Accredited Family Law Specialist.