Relationships work well only when partners try to understand each other well. Emotional needs in a relationship are the deepest desires of spouses. Satisfying your partner’s essential needs will benefit your significant relationship immensely. It will fuel romantic love and reduce your chances of getting a divorce.
The greatest marriages are built on teamwork, a mutual respect, a healthy dose of admiration and a never-ending portion of love and grace.Fawn Weaver
Willard F. Harley, Jr has popularized the concept of “emotional needs” through his extensive writings.
Essential emotional needs in a relationship
These are what women need most from men. Meeting these needs makes you an irresistible husband.
2. Family Commitment
3. Honesty and Openness
These are what men need from women. Meeting these needs makes you an irresistible wife.
3. Sexual Fulfilment
4. Physical Attractiveness of their Spouse
5. Domestic Support
• Intimate conversation
A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seem too short.Andre Maurois
Intimate conversation is different from everyday conversation. It’s personal, reveals feelings, concerns, and cares, and is often emotional. It is cardinal to a good marriage and is an intense desire of women. Effective communication involves talking about and listening to whatever your spouse says. It consists in giving each other undivided attention and avoiding unnecessary interruptions. It’s best to avoid making selfish demands or angry outbursts during conversations.
Women often feel that their husbands don’t listen to them. They might think, “He’s not really interested in what I have to say.” Men must show interest in their wives by actively listening and asking questions. That lets her know that she’s important and that you care about her thoughts and feelings.
According to the book “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus”, John Gray posits that there is a fundamental difference in the communication pattern between the genders. Women love to go into details when they speak, but men are inpatient listeners who can’t wait to hear the end of a story.
Husbands should know that their wives want someone to listen to them empathetically. So, they should desist from jumping in with offers of quick fixes.
• Family commitment
The purpose of marriage is not to have pleasure and to be idle, but to procreate and bring up children, to support a household. This, of course, is a huge burden full of great cares and toils.Martin Luther
Family commitment includes the willingness of spouses to have children together. In addition, couples should spend quality time on their children’s moral and educational development. Activities include eating family meals together and engaging in family sporting activities.
Please learn how to agree with your partner about child training and disciplining. If you have children, be consistent in their discipline and discourage favouritism. Also, explain the rules to young children and gently bear their unending “why’s”.
• Honesty and openness
There is no disguise which can hide love for long where it exists, or feign it where it does not.Duc de la Rochefoucauld
Honesty and openness are two critical ingredients in successful relationships. In addition, learning to hold information from your partner can lead to all sorts of problems down the road, so it’s essential to be honest with them about your past and present. In addition, transparency allows you to build a strong foundation of trust, which is necessary for any relationship to thrive. Doubt and misunderstanding can quickly build walls between partners, so ensuring you’re on the same page as often as possible is essential.
Vulnerability is another crucial need for women in relationships. They typically need more intimacy, honesty, and openness than men to feel secure and connected. Unfortunately, for many men, vulnerability is seen as a sign of weakness, while women often see it as a gift.
Radical honesty involves being open and transparent with your partner about everything – no secrets allowed! Their bond will become incredibly strong when both partners are willing to share their innermost thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or ridicule.
Remember also that trust and respect are the bedrock of any successful marriage.
• Financial support
It’s great to have financial support. But having someone’s emotional support is something that I wish I had more of growing up.Erika Jayne
Regarding emotional needs, most women want financial support from their husbands. That is often the result of social expectations, even as more and more women have become employed. However, the level of financial independence expected from a wife varies based on the couple’s background and goals.
• Emotional need for affection
Affection is the most profound need of women, but men also need it to a lesser degree. Affection is communicating care to your spouse in a non-sexual manner. That is akin to the love language of physical touch. Examples include sharing love notes, cards, and flowers. You can also show affection by holding hands, cuddling, kissing, and giving gifts.
It is ideal for couples to exchange gifts to celebrate birthdays and special anniversaries.
Unfortunately, after a few years of being together, couples usually drift into a relationship devoid of affection. A husband’s love for his wife can send the following messages: I care about you.
• Recreational companionship
There is no more lovely, friendly, and charming relationship, communion or company than a good marriage.Martin Luther
The wise saying goes, “a couple that plays together stays together.” Couples must schedule time together to engage in joint activities they love. When both partners have their activities and interests, they can come back together refreshed and invigorated. It also gives them time and space to focus on each other exclusively, which is crucial to a successful marriage.
The Policy of Undivided Attention encourages couples to schedule quality time together in sports, recreation, or hobbies. By doing this, they can maintain a healthy balance in their relationship. In addition, spending uninterrupted time together helps keep things in perspective and prevents the fast-paced world from taking its toll on the marriage.
Spouses who constantly engage in separate leisures may be sabotaging their marriage.
Behind every successful man should be an admiring wife-and vice versa. David Onu Click To Tweet
• Sexual fulfilment
Sexual fulfilment is an essential physical need in intimate relationships. It is also the most profound need of men. Due to higher testosterone, men have a higher sex drive than women. As a result, men become aware of sexual acts earlier.
Also, there are different motivations for sexual fulfilment in both sexes. For example, men take part in sex to please their cravings. But, women’s reason is for intimacy and emotional bonding.
Couples admire each other when they appreciate and respect their partner’s good qualities. Admiration or words of affirmation is a vital love language of most men because it motivates and energizes them.
Behind every successful man should be an admiring wife-and vice versa. Make a list of all the good qualities you admire in your spouse.
Never flatter your partner. Also, avoid criticizing your mate, as it is disrespectful. Instead, raise complaints about genuine problems that deserve attention.
• Physical attractiveness
Go ahead to make a list of all the good qualities you admire in your spouse. Never flatter your partner. Also, avoid criticizing your mate as it is disrespectful. Instead, raise complaints about genuine problems that deserve attention. Click To Tweet
Most men are concerned about the physical attractiveness of their spouses. Elements of common concerns include body weight and physical fitness. Improving one’s hygiene and grooming is advisable to be continually attracted to your partner. On average, women will invest more resources in cosmetics, makeup, and hairstyling.
• Domestic support
Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave.Martin Luther
Domestic support is a vital emotional need of men. But, it is also becoming a concern for women as most are now engaged in full-term employment. Domestic support comprises maintaining a home and caring for children and pets. Such activities include food preparation, dishwashing, laundry, vacuuming, and lawn mowing.
In addition, couples should work together and seek paid help for some house chores they cannot do when they can afford it.
Here’s how marital conflicts affect the emotional needs in a relationship.
When couples argue, they tend to fall into predictable patterns of behaviour. That is often the result of communication breakdown. When this happens, feelings are hurt, and it can seem impossible to find solutions.
There are four stages of marital conflicts: dysfunctional, chaotic, constructive, and mature.
- Dysfunctional means that both partners are not meeting each other’s needs.
- Chaotic is when things spiral out of control and become heated with little resolution.
- Constructive is when both partners meet each other’s needs halfway but still have unresolved issues.
- Finally, maturity is when both partners fully meet each other’s emotional needs and have no outstanding issues between them.
How can you tell your spouse’s emotional needs?
There are a few ways to ascertain your spouse’s emotional needs. You can ask them directly or observe how they express their love to you.
Ask them about their vital emotional needs.
If you want to be able to meet your partner’s emotional needs, it’s essential to ask them directly. That way, you can better understand what makes them feel fulfilled and cherished. When spouses meet each other’s emotional needs, they will enjoy spending time together and sharing details of their lives. In addition, you will feel comfortable expressing your feelings to your partner if your needs are met. Therefore, it’s essential to communicate your needs.
You can ask your spouse the following questions to ascertain their emotional needs:
- How can I help you?
- How can I make your life easier?
- How can I be a better husband or wife?
Pay attention to how they show you love
Attention to how your partner expresses love to you may be vital in discovering their emotional needs. Also, what are the common requests that they make of you?
What are some things you should avoid doing if you want to support your spouse emotionally?
Don’t try to fix their problem.
One of the most important things you can do to support your partner emotionally is not to try to fix their problem. If you focus on what you can change, your problems will diminish, and happiness will come naturally. That isn’t easy, but it is crucial to maintain a healthy relationship.
Don’t be dismissive of their feelings.
Even though your needs might change, you must always be sensitive to your partner’s needs. It is important not to dismiss their feelings and instead listen carefully and communicate empathetically. That will help avoid misunderstandings and encourage deeper dialogue.
Please don’t make them feel like they are not necessary to you.
One of the worst things you can do to your husband or wife emotionally is to make them feel like they are not essential to you. Unfortunately, when men or women think this way, it often drives them away from the relationship.
The best way to avoid this is by simply telling them how much you appreciate them and all they do for you. Compliments are essential in a relationship, so give them often.
If something your spouse did bothers you, try to communicate with them constructively. Criticism makes it personal, and it can often be confusing for your spouse. Instead, focus on complaints, which are specific issues that need resolution.
What happens when couples have unmet emotional needs?
When emotional needs go unmet in a relationship, it can lead to various negative consequences. For one, it often leaves people feeling lonely and isolated. Additionally, dissatisfied people can experience different negative emotions, such as sadness, anger, anxiety, or emptiness. Such negative feelings may escalate into domestic violence.
These feelings can be pretty draining and increase tension or exhaustion within the relationship. Sometimes, unmet emotional needs may lead to extramarital affairs or cause couples to break up. Unmet emotional needs can be a hallmark of toxic relationships.
Signs that your partner’s emotional needs are not being met?
- They are no longer interested in sex.
- They are always complaining.
- They are always talking about their ex.
- They are always angry, short-tempered, or have other love busters.
However, this does not have to be the case – partners must learn to recognize and meet each other’s needs.
Now, you have the essential emotional needs in a relationship or marriage. Communicating these needs with your spouse and fulfilling them will benefit your relationship exceedingly. It will fuel your romantic love and lower the chances of divorce.
- Intimate conversation
- Family commitment
- Honesty and openness
- Financial support
- Recreational companionship
- Sexual fulfilment
- Physical attractiveness
- Domestic support
Which of the above emotional needs are essential to you or your spouse?
I would love to hear your thoughts.
Thanks for your time.