Does Your Husband Stink at Romance? Mine too.

Thus far, I’ve only identified myself as “J” — anonymous Christian sex blogger living somewhere in the United States with a husband and family. But I have decided that it is time to reveal something personal about myself — something about my family. I want to tell you about my husband.

Well, not so much tell you about my husband as tell you who he is. So brace yourself, hold your breath, because here he is — the man to whom I am married:

Live long and prosper.

My husband actually has a different name, but the personality is pretty much the same. I am married to Spock. It’s all about what is LOGICAL.

Bringing your wife flowers for no reason is not logical. Buying expensive jewelry because it’s pretty is not logical. Telling her that she’s beautiful today when you already said it last week is not logical.

I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only one married to someone who just doesn’t “get it” when it comes to beauty, spontaneity, and going the extra mile for a big gesture of love. So how do you get a guy like this to engage in romance in your marriage?

Here’s what I’ve learned from my marriage to a Vulcan:

Take the lead. It does not occur to my husband to create a romantic environment for date night or lovemaking. Since I am the one who craves romance more — although he enjoys it — I merely take it upon myself to set the scene. I light the candles, I turn on the music, I pour the bubble bath, or whatever. Putting forth a little effort can create an atmosphere where the only instruction left is “Simply Add Water Hubby.”

Ask for romance. I need to hear that I am beautiful, that my husband desires me, that he loves me. Sometimes he forgets that. I used to be hurt by the omission. But after several years of marriage, I realized that my husband doesn’t gush about his mother either, and she is downright heroic to him.

Rather than feeling injured by his inattention, I invite his attention. For instance, I can put on my sexy nightie or nudie and ask, “So what do you think?” Or say, “You know what I like about your body?” and go through a list, followed by “What do you like about mine?”  I have now opened the floor for him to express what I need to hear.

Establish routines. I had a friend whose husband’s lack of affection was hurting her feelings. She finally told him, “I need you to kiss me before you leave for work and kiss me when you get home.” It became their routine. Was it forced at first? Yeah, a little. But now it’s something they both enjoy — a romantic tradition.

Routines can be great for both of you. Demanding lots of spontaneous romance from a non-romantic guy is like mounting a Mount Everest expedition with a few Kit-Kat bars in your pack; don’t get your hopes up. Asking your honey to introduce a romantic routine into your relationship, though, is predictable and tangible — something he can put on a to-do list and check off. Perhaps the routine is a kiss or a hug at a certain time. Perhaps he takes on planning a date or a vacation for the two of you on a special day each year (giving him plenty of time to prepare). Perhaps the routine is that he undresses you in particular way, noting as he goes all the beautiful parts of your body. Just make the romantic tradition something achievable for him and enjoyable to you.

Remember your hubby loves you. When your best friend tells you how her romantic hubby swept her off her feet with a surprise trip to a mountain cabin where he cooked her favorite meal, serenaded her with his guitar, and sprinkled the bed with rose petals before making love to her, you may wonder why your husband doesn’t love you like that.

While I encourage husbands to up their game when it comes to the romance department, some guys are amazing at it and some guys aren’t. Whether he has natural wooing talent is not related to how much he loves you.

Plenty of non-romantic guys would respond to “Do you love your wife?” with an unequivocal “Of course.” In fact, it isn’t logical to Mr. Spock to restate the obvious over and over. So ask your husband to tell you and to show you, and when he follows through, remember that he is outside his comfort zone in expressing the love for you that is well within his comfort zone. He loves you like crazy; he just needs cues to know how to demonstrate that love.

Enjoy the surprises. Because my guy isn’t a hard-core romantic, I revel in those times when he goes above and beyond. For a recent birthday, my husband wrote me a love poem. A love poem! If you knew this guy — which you do if you ever watched the original Star Trek — you’d know how big a deal that is. I was on Cloud 9½ for the next month.

We wives should all enjoy the romance our husbands bring to marriage, but when it’s not your guy’s thing, those moments are super-sweet. Instead of thinking, “I wish he would do this more often,” just enjoy the moment. Bask in it. Know how hard it was for him to make that effort, and how much that means he loves you.

For the hubbies reading this post, make the effort. Go the extra mile. Woo your wife. If you don’t know what to do, ask your sister or her sister; ask a group of female co-workers what they like from their hubbies; seek ideas online (The Romantic Vineyard and The Generous Wife have date night suggestions).

For you Trekkies, here’s proof that even Spock can be romantic (from “All Our Yesterdays”).

Meanwhile, wives, do what you can to introduce the romance you want into your marriage. Your husband likely won’t be as romantic as the hunk in the latest chick flick romance. He doesn’t have a screenwriting team to come up with all of that for him. He’s on his own. So help him out.

I can honestly say from my life with Spock that melding minds is far outweighed by melding hearts when we make the extra effort. (Plus, aren’t those pointy ears kind of cute?)

23 thoughts on “Does Your Husband Stink at Romance? Mine too.

  1. Gregory Donner

    I think the truth is that it’s not so much logic as it an issue of those husbands/men who are simply inept when it comes to reading body language (facial expressions, tone of voice, etc.); and not just from their wives, but from everyone around them. I say that because I’ve met some of them.

  2. J

    Excellent point. In fact, psychologically speaking, these Spocks are probably somewhere on the Aspberger’s scale. (But don’t quote me; I’m not a Ph.D. in the field.) The inability to get those social cues is definitely in that realm.

  3. Julie Sibert

    Mrs. Hot Holy Humorous… such a great post, as usual! Where did you get all those good insightful writing skills (and where on earth do you find such good video clips. Who would have thought a star trek clip could be so risque…in a good way!?!!

    Anyway, I do love the insights, especially the point about that it’s okay to ask for what you want and it’s okay to help set up an atmosphere that makes romance more likely.

    I do have a little personal story to add. I once thought that I wanted more spontaneous passionate french kisses from my Beloved… kisses that would surprise me at the least likely moment, like when I was cooking dinner, etc. Well, God bless my husband… he tried this. And do you know what… it wasn’t quite the romantic moment I’d hoped it would be. It seemed awkward and I seemed distracted (by all the dinner cooking, of course). BUT, what I will say is that I’m glad we tried. Otherwise I wouldn’t know that spontaneous french kisses aren’t really my thing. Ha!

    Keep up the great work!!

  4. Anonymous

    Step it up, Men!
    You don’t want to initiate all the sex, and women don’t want to initiate all the romance.
    You don’t want us to have sex, going through the motions, out of obligation, and women don’t want romance, going through the motions, out of obligation, either.

    Pity Sex/Pity Romance. Sounds like a similar problem.

  5. Anonymous

    “Whether he has natural wooing talent is not related to how much he loves you.”

    I needed to be reminded of that. Thanks!

  6. UK Fred

    You are married to John Redwood, the British Member of Parliament (who has been called ‘The Vulcan’) and I claim my $25.00

  7. J

    Ha! 🙂 Great guess, UK Fred. However, I’m on the other side of the Atlantic. I like the British accent, though.

  8. tori

    Thank you so much. I love instructions. I am now going to print these and read daily. I always get caught up on the “if I have to do it myself, it must be fake.” But I really like the idea of owning my own needs.

  9. J

    Thanks, Tori. I figure it’s only fake if my hubby doesn’t feel it. In many cases, the husband feels all of that mushy love deep inside but doesn’t have the natural bent to show it through romantic gestures. I help him out. 🙂 Best wishes!

  10. Sheila

    So true! Great post, J. If you need romance, create it. Don’t get mad at him for not being the same as you. That’s counterproductive and just builds resentment. Instead, have fun together. Create the things that you need. I think if we all gave up a lot of our expectations, and instead did what we could to get our needs met, our marriages would be much stronger!

    Sheila from To Love, Honor and Vacuum!

  11. Christy

    So true! Loved this post. I am the planner and the romantic but my husband loves it and I love him so it always ends up being fun and for both of us. When I plan a surprise get away to the beach is it for him? Sure but it blesses me and refreshes me as well and it doesnt really matter who plans the time as long as we are getting there. It took me a LONG time to figure that out. LOL!

  12. Debi - The Romantic Vineyard

    Excellent post! Thanks for the link up, J. Very kind of you. We offer a Wives Only and a Husbands Only page for creative ideas on how to surprise your spouse. We would love to hear some ideas from all of you too. If you have time, head over and comment with your own ideas on how to romance your spouse. I’m linking to this post for sure!
    Thanks!
    Debi

  13. Anonymous

    I agree with this post. however I think there are some points in this post you give some manipulating advice. If a woman wants to know what her husband likes about her body ask don’t manipulate him into saying what he likes. Husbands may be logical but most of them are also loyal and if you tell your husband I need to hear from you what you like about my body he will tell you. So don’t manipulate ask fist.

  14. J

    I see your point, but I don’t think it’s manipulating to ask questions if your husband is aware that you want to hear those things and that he doesn’t think about it unless you ask. My hubby doesn’t mind me asking for his honest (and encouraging) opinion about my body, and I thought it would be nice to go first and tell him what’s so terrific about him. Then it’s fun for you both. Thanks so much for commenting!

  15. Matthew

    I have to admit that I have a checklist for myself. Every day I try to write a little love note for my wife, and to help me remember I actually have that on my daily todo list. Otherwise it’s so easy to get busy and over-look that little thing, as important as it might be.

    It’s kind of like having scheduled dates. If we didn’t make specific times for dates it is so easy to look at the calendar and realize that we haven’t gone out on a date in a month or more.

  16. Anonymous

    So what happens if your wife tells you that she craves the attention and the romance and I try my best every single day and then I get no reply from her?
    This is what’s happening to me. I hear from her “how wonderful” I am to her since I take care of the house on top of working my regular job and taking care of our son (on my days off). She works too but I do most of the house work and cooking to “lessen” her stress. On top of that I try to do something romantic when I can but still gets me nowhere.
    Sorry, I just had to say that because I need help and I just feel like I been kicked around and if I try to bring it up (like I’ve tried alone and in counseling) she feels like I am judging her.

  17. J

    Anonymous – Obviously, it’s hard to read a single paragraph and know all of the complexities of a situation. I wonder, however, from what you’re saying if there is a love language disconnect. Marriage expert Gary Chapman believes that there are 5 languages for expressing love – affection, words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts, and quality time. Oftentimes, one spouse is expressing love in one way when their spouse would prefer to receive that message through other means.

    For instance, some women love romantic gifts – flowers, love notes, etc. For others, romance is holding her hand. We need all of these languages at different times, but some we desire more often than others.

    Whatever your situation, I suggest that when you talk to your wife, you ask more questions and make fewer statements. Ask what would express love to her. If it isn’t housework, ditch it. Hire it out. Share it as a family. Whatever. If it isn’t flowers, don’t buy them. Don’t waste your money. But find out how she wants you to express the love you already feel.

    Best wishes! Keep trying.

  18. Suse

    Oh my goodness!!! We must be married to the same guy!!!!!!!!! LOL…seriously, my hubby is like this too, but I married him knowing that he was not romantic. Every now and then he surprises me by bringing home flowers (that he stole from his mothers garden)…and it moves me to tears because he NEVER does things like that, so yes, I treasure the times when he does do it. And in the same way I have had to ask him to tell me he loves me and thinks I am beautiful, because in my head I know he does, but my heart needs to hear it often. Thanks for another great post!

  19. Jenni

    LOL! Oh my goodness this describes my hubby to a ‘T’! He has learned over our ten years of marriage that writing “I love you” in a card can go a long ways. 😉 And just the other day I got flowers for no reason. 🙂

  20. Anonymous

    Hahaha this was awesome! I linked to you from The Romantic Vineyard and laughed out loud when I realised that I am totally married to a Spock!! It was our wedding anniversary yesterday and if it hadn’t been for me organising to go out for dinner (albeit with our littlies) it would have passed without reference. It did pass without flowers, a gift or a card and yes I was {am} disappointed but this post helps put it in perspective abit.

  21. Adam's Eve

    Wow! I love the Spock clip. My husband can at times be very much a Spock which makes the times he is romantic all the more romantic. It wouldn’t be romance if it didn’t happen all the time, right? I have to remind him about birthdays and drop hints about Christmas, anniversaries, and Valentines. He usually is a shop last minute kind of guy whereas I put a lot of thought into it in advance. Even so, like I said, it makes the moments he is romantic – really romantic!

  22. Mrs. Right

    Mr. Right and I are both part Vulcan, but we KNOW how important it is to say how we feel. We don’t always verbalize things, but we chat online with each other, and we have our signature phrases and codes. They might be somewhat predictable, but I always smile when he tells me them anyway. 🙂 We are both bad about forgetting our anniversary. Well, we KNOW it’s coming, but then it still sneaks up on us anyway, but since we’re so much alike it doesn’t bother us.

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