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It’s Not Your Job to Make Your Spouse Happy

I am going to tell you something about making your spouse happy that I wish you heard a long time ago.  It might sound ludicrous, but hang in there with me. Hopefully I’ll be able to clear it up.

Your job isn’t to make your spouse happy.

Let me say it again just in case you thought you misread…


I’m not recommending you turn toward your spouse right now to them know. I need you to keep reading because a sentence like that needs context. Without context, you might end up sleeping on the couch.

Here’s the issue when happiness is the primary goal in your relationship: you’ll fail. Who wants to feel like a failure? Do you know what two feelings people dislike the most in a relationship? Failure and rejection, but that’s for another blog.

Let’s focus on this happiness stuff.  Happiness is based on situations and possessions, it is here one minute and gone the next. Kind of like when you spend too much money on a Christmas present for your kid and a week later they’re no longer playing with it.

If happiness isn’t the goal, then what is your job then? That’s a great question, I’m glad you asked.

Your job as a spouse, as a partner, is to love your counterpart well.

Is there a difference? Yes! Huge difference. Huge.  Will loving them well make them happy? Sometimes, yes. Sometimes, no.  For example, conversations about unmet needs, budgets, or parenting preferences tend to not make people feel happy, but they are necessary. Having those necessary conversations instead of stuffing them to allow resentment to grow is loving them well. You’re choosing communication and love over resentment.

Loving them well also means being present. That means listening. It means understanding their love language and trying your best to meet those needs every day.  It is their job to choose happiness and the easiest way is through gratitude.

Give us a call at 832-421-8714 if you feel like you and your spouse are stuck in the happiness circle and need help getting out of it.  We have some great counselors who can help you get on the right track.

***This same concept of love over happiness can be applied with our children. If yours are anything like mine they would be terribly happy playing video games and eating candy all day. No real food, just Twizzlers, Snickers, jelly beans, and cookies in one hand and Fortnite on the Xbox. But, loving our kids and wanting the best isn’t allowing that on a daily basis even though that would make them happy.


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