Responsibilities of a Husband

On New Year’s Eve, I had a conversation with hubby about the state of our relationship. During the conversation, he admitted that he realized he was ill prepared for the responsibilities expected of him as a husband. I appreciated that he admitted that to me. Over the past few days, we’ve been sort of going back and forth as to whether he’s ready to step up and take care of those responsibilities or not. He really hasn’t decided yet.

So I’ve been thinking about what are the responsibilities of a husband? What is a husband expected to do to contribute dutifully in a marriage?

Be the Spiritual Leader

In my marriage, the number one thing I am looking for in my husband is for him to be the spiritual leader. We hit a road block with this trait first when we couldn’t come to an agreement on what church to attend. My husband was raised a primitive baptist, and I was raised a missionary baptist. I have been going to church with him since we first started dating. He even proposed at his church. However, I’ve never been 100% comfortable worshiping there. He’s visited my church once and does not care for it, nor my pastor.

One way I expect him to be the spiritual leader in our marriage is to lead us in prayer. I have asked hubby to pray for us, and it just…hasn’t happened. We pray individually. Every night, I do pray for us and our marriage. I would love for him to lead us in prayer, because I truly believe a couple who prays together, stays together.

Be the Provider

One of the first things people think of when they think of the responsibilities that rest with the husband is to provide for the family. Since our wedding, our immediate family has consisted of him and I (and Frankie at one point). Being the provider means working to make money and take care of things financially. Rent or a mortgage needs to be paid monthly. Utility and other bills should be handled. Food needs to be on the table. In our marriage, I have never looked to him to be the sole provider, and have contributed as well. Some couples feel it’s strictly the man’s job; I’m okay with working so we can live comfortably.

Be Emotionally Available

A tough one for any husband, being emotionally available is very important. I don’t expect him to be the most sensitive man in the world, but I do expect him to be open about how he feels, and compassionate about my feelings. I mentioned before that Terrance was emotionally constipated, and usually only opens up after a lot of poking and prodding. And it doesn’t come easy. Usually I get shut out before I get to the bottom of how he’s really feeling. He says he’s the logical one and I’m the emotional one, but I can see it the opposite on some days.

Be Physically Present

This has been the source of many arguments lately. Because we’re not under the same roof, we only have so much time we can spend with each other. Once I started working, we agreed that weekends would be our time together. However, we haven’t had a consistent spree of weekends together. Sometimes he makes other plans, and weekends are out. I don’t think it’s asking too much, to block out not even a full 72 hours for me, but he has struggled with this, no matter how many times I’ve asked for him to change it.

These are just some responsibilities of a husband. What would you add? Do you have any suggestions on how my husband can grasp these concepts?

6 Responses to Responsibilities of a Husband

  1. Travis Pizel says:

    I feel it is my responsibility as a husband to put my family first. I love to exercise and work out – but not at the expense of my family responsibilities. I get up at 4:30am and workout so that I can be back home in time to make sure everybody gets up, gets breakfast, lunches get packed and we’re all out the door on time. I’m a part time blogger, but do most of my blogging after everyone else goes to bed because I don’t it to interfere with the evening family time. If there’s ever a choice between what I want to do, and something the family needs me to do – the family comes first.

  2. Very accurate! I often listen to William Bell’s “Forgot to be your lover”. It reminds me to make my wife feel special. We both work really hard and makes me think about the small things that only I do to make her smile.

  3. Grace says:

    Number one, as a married couple I think you two should be under the same roof. If you are away for school that may be a different story. My husband and I were long distant daters. I couldnt find a job in the town he lived in and he had an excellent job with all the perks. So I moved because we decided its best we live under the same roof to make our marriage work. I believe in a marriage you should. I do understand about the prayer and the church thats a tough one and if you two keep talking maybe you will come to a middle. Maybe try attending another church besides both you guys home church. Find one together.

  4. I agree with much of what you said, but I must say that being emotionally available is probably the most important. It may be that my husband is as you said yours is.. “emotionally constipated” [love that analogy by the way], so I know how frustrating it is.I feel that if a couple cannot be open and accepting of each other, than you cannot have a successful marriage. Communication is such an important aspect of a relationship, whether it be on your values, your feelings, your wants/needs, etc… I also agree with the Spiritual Provider… I am at a point in my life where I have such a desire to get closer to God, and sometimes I feel that by him not being on that same page, it holds me back from that. I sometimes get afraid to take the steps I need to take, maybe being afraid of being ridiculed by him. Also, there is a lack of support when partners cant agree. The important thing is that you two are communicating your feelings at this point and trying to figure out what common grounds you can find to walk on. Good luck!

  5. JoeTaxpayer says:

    Interesting expectations. My wife has nearly 7 years on me, and when we met, an income a bit higher than mine. So, the breadwinning was a joint effort as we maintained a lifestyle that required both of our incomes. I handle the investing and have done well for us.
    I’m not one to go off with the boys and be unavailable to my family. I wanted to be a dad even more than my wife wanted to be a mom. So I committed to be the best dad I could be, and my 14 year old will agree that aside from the normal embarrassing (to a teen) things I do, she knows that I’m there for her. When there’s anything going on, I’m there. In a school class of 20, if there’s 3 dads showing up to an event, one of them is me. If anything, I hope I’m as good a husband as I am a father.
    Relationships are a tough balancing act, but dialog is most important, both partners need to be there for each other. For what it’s worth, I knew my wife for ten years before we got married. My daughter once heard us bickering and asked if we were getting divorced. I told her that friends get into arguments now and then. I said mom and I have been arguing for nearly 30 years, I can’t imagine spending the rest of my life with anyone else. And no, when we argue, neither of us ever says anything we later regret. Arguing doesn’t mean disrespect or being mean spirited.

  6. Julie@Faithful With a Few says:

    This is a wonderful list. I also wish we would pray together more often. It will help in every area of our lives. I am blessed to have a husband who does many of these things. It may be something we will discuss soon while talking about expectations for me as a wife. Thanks for sharing!

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