There is nothing that changes the dynamic of your marriage so quickly as hearing these two words: We’re pregnant!
Within days the morning sickness (or all day sickness, in some cases) kicks in and the wife is taken out of her normal routine leaving the rest of the family to fend for themselves. This is a great opportunity for husbands to lay down their lives for their wife and their other children, but it isn’t easy. Self-sacrifice always comes at a cost, but realizing this before you get there will help you keep your thoughts focused on what’s of most importance–loving your wife as Christ has loved you. And wives this isn’t the time to dismiss yourself completely either; God desires to still use you in your weakness to love, bless and serve your family.
What does it look like to love your wife during this season?
What does it look like to honor and love your husband when you feel so horrible?
We’ve asked several expectant moms and have also drawn from our own experience to come up with a list of 25 practical ways to love your spouse during pregnancy. Some of these will apply only to the husband. Some will apply to only the wife, but many will apply to both.
Read them and allow the Holy Spirit to help prepare your heart and mind for this season, if you haven’t experienced it already.
- Smells are often the first thing to nauseate women. Do what you can to keep her from having to smell unpleasant things.
- Keep the garbage in the can outside with the lid on.
- Be willing to change diapers whenever you’re home.
- Be there. Now is not the time to take on new projects at work. You have a new project and it’s helping your wife as she carries your next child to a healthy birth.
- Order take out when your wife simply can’t bear the thought or smell of cooking.
- Cook on the grill and set the table to eat outside.
- Prefer your spouse over your own feelings. Be mindful to love them more than you love yourself.
- Speak words of kindness and gratefulness for the things they are doing to bless you.
- Pray for your spouse on a daily basis, and do it together so they can hear their heart for you.
- As much as possible give them space. Allow for a night to do what they want to do after the kids are in bed.
- Ask questions to draw them out in regards to how they’re doing. And when asked be open, honest and kind. This isn’t the time to dump, but to help your spouse understand your perspective and the challenges you’re facing.
- Avoid being overly sensitive.
- Eat well and stay hydrated.
- Go together to doctor appointments as much as possible. It’s important to remember you’re both expecting and both of you being present at such appointments is a great reminder of your support for each other.
- Surprise your spouse in unexpected ways, using their love language.
- Dream about your new baby and what he/she will look like.
- Talk about names and their meaning.
- Don’t take things personally when your spouse says something that hurts. Instead talk about it. Resolve hurts quickly.
- Ask your spouse what you can do that will bless them on this day. Don’t assume that what you think is a blessing, is a blessing. The only way to know is to ask.
- Be faithful to do the things that you say you’ll do. Having to be reminded doesn’t bless your spouse.
- Empathize. This means to put yourself in your spouse’s place. How would you feel if you were going through what they are? This thought will help you serve them with the right mindset.
- Don’t expect your spouse to make much of the things you’re doing for them. Let your work be as unto the Lord. He notices when you humbly lay down your life for another, for this is reflecting His character in your marriage.
- Avoid having a pity party. No one likes to be around someone who is feeling sorry for themselves. How do you do this? By taking captive every thought during your pregnancy. Each morning realize your need for the Holy Spirit and He will provide fresh mercy.
- As your baby (the fruit of your love) grows, purpose to grow in the fruits of the spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. There are 9 fruits of the Spirit and 9 months of pregnancy. Why not do a personal study on one each month?
- Don’t neglect your relationship with your Heavenly Father. He cares for you and there is no one like Him who can come alongside you in your weakness. He is giving you a gift, and let this gift be used by God to change you in the process.
- Allow your wife to take naps as needed. Maybe even take one with her on days off.
- What would you add to this list? Please comment…