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10 Things Your Partner Needs… Even if they don’t tell you

  1. Needing nonsexual physical contact: Your partner may not want sex, but might crave more physical closeness and not know how to ask for that.
  2. More alone time: It’s not rude to want to be alone. Some people are overwhelmed being with others constantly and just need some time to recharge when their energy is low.
  3. Someone to listen to them (without replying): There are just times when you’ve had enough advice, and you just need someone to listen to you. When you’ve just got to get something off your chest, or need to hear your ideas spoken out loud.
  4. A shoulder to cry on: We all need this sometimes and it’s hard to ask for it. Your spouse may just need to vent to someone and you’re the likely candidate. Thank your lucky stars you are the one they chose.
  5. More emotional support: It’s hard for us to do it all. Sometimes it feels like the weight of the world is sitting squarely on our shoulders. We get tired from being “the strong one” all the time.  Your spouse might just need an extra bit of support from you at times.
  6. Less advice: It’s hard for us to tell our partners NOT to help. We may have already made up our minds about a problem, we don’t need any more advice, but how do we tell our partner’s this without hurting their feelings? Be straightforward and simply say, “Thanks, but I’ve got this figured out! “
  7. Some time away: It’s not a reflection on you if your spouse needs some time away. We all need a little break from the pressures of work and relationships. Encourage a golf vacation or send your wife on a girls’ weekend. When you come back together you’ll have something new to talk about.
  8. Quiet companionship: Sometimes all we need is to just BE. No talking, no problem solving, no rehashing of old issues, just quiet companionship. This can be difficult to ask for but crucial to feeling at peace with oneself and each other.
  9. Some encouragement: We need a cheerleader! Someone to lift us up; tell us we can do it, and to encourage us not to give up. It’s not something we generally ask for, but be aware that all of us need this.
  10. Moral support: We all make mistakes, we’re all flawed and none of us are perfect. It’s when we fall short and are in doubt that we need our spouse to be our moral compass. The moral support we fear to ask for is what is needed when we are struggling with self-doubt or insecurity. Our spouse is that one person who can really lift us up out of despair. We don’t know how to ask for this. We can only hope that our spouse is sensitive enough to know when that kind of support is needed.

If you are in a close connected relationship with your partner you likely will have an idea what it is that your partner needs from you. If they’re unable to ask for it, you can ask them. “What do you need from me right now?” This question can save a relationship or even save a life. It’s so hard to ask for what we need. Hopefully these tips will help you to take a deeper look at what your partner isn’t asking for.

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About the Author:

Stuart Fensterheim, LCSW helps couples to overcome the disconnection in their relationships As an author, blogger and podcaster, Stuart has helped couples around the world to experience a unique relationship in which they can feel special and important, confident in knowing they are loved deeply and that their presence matters. His weekend workshop, Two Days: Seven Conversations has become a popular venue for many to set off on their journey of connectedness. The Couples Expert Podcast consists of weekly provocative conversations offering the perspectives and insight of experts from a variety of relationship related fields. Stuart also offers daily relationship video tips on The Couples Expert YouTube channeland by subscription in Stuart’s Daily Notes. Stuart is happily married and a devoted father of 2 daughters. He lives and works in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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