I Need to Feel Appreciated, But My Spouse Doesn’t Get It. What Now?


Everyone wants to feel appreciated. It’s a natural human desire. And in our marriages, that’s especially true.

When we marry, we’re counting on our spouse to help us feel loved, seen, heard, and appreciated. And, each of us takes for granted that the other person will deliver on that expectation. However, it’s easy for marriages to become overtaken by day-to-day routines. Somewhere along the way, showing appreciation can fall by the wayside.

What if your spouse isn’t showing the appreciation you’d like to see? Maybe you’ve brought up your concerns before, but you haven’t seen any changes that bring you peace of mind. What should you do?

It’s possible for spouses to rekindle the careful consideration and appreciation they enjoyed early on. There are some steps you can take to gently call your spouse’s attention to the issue again–and maybe even steer your marriage in a better direction. Let’s talk about it.

Be Specific About Your Needs

Assuming that your spouse is dedicated to helping you feel more appreciated, you might need to be more specific about what you need. Maybe you’ve said, “I want to feel more appreciated,” but your spouse isn’t completely sure what you expect of them. This is where you might need to gently detail what you’re asking for.

Feeling neglected or unappreciated in your marriage hurts deeply. Chances are, your spouse doesn’t want to hurt you. They might just need additional guidance and communication so they can better support you.

Start With Smaller, But Consistent, Asks

As you’re helping your spouse to show up for you, consider starting the process of change with smaller asks. For example, you could suggest one act of appreciation per week that would make you feel loved and supported. Make it easier, not harder, for your spouse to make you happy.

These small, consistent requests will help you to see progress while allowing your spouse to make sustainable adjustments. That way, it’s possible for them to keep this habit up over time. In this scenario, everyone wins.

Remember That Change Takes Time

It takes time to change a behavior pattern, especially if it’s long-term. Even if your spouse intends to be more appreciative, their ingrained habits might be difficult to break. Try to show them patience as they make the needed changes.

One of the most difficult things to do is to be patient while your spouse makes changes to their behavior. But in the end, patience pays off. Keep giving them grace and gently nudging them when you’re feeling neglected.

Take Time to Tune In to Each Other Daily

In order to better show your appreciation for one another, you’ll need to be more tuned in to one another each day. One way to do this is by spending time with a daily devotional. Our One Year Love Talk Devotional contains daily readings that help us to love one another better each day. Learn more and order your copy here.

Have you and your spouse experienced a time when one of you didn’t feel appreciated? What did you do to change things for the better? Leave us a comment and share your story below.

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