Acknowledging Your Spouse Does Not Deny You

by The Relationship Guy
July 15, 2021

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Acknowledging the fact that your spouse has specific needs does not disclaim yours nor deny you.

Appreciating that your spouse’s needs might be slightly unique from yours, sometimes undeniably true, does not mean you do not value nor have similar needs.

Just because your husband desires your respect more than your affection does not imply nor mean you don’t need nor want his respect. Neither does it mean he devalues attentiveness.

Just because your wife experiences listening as the solution to her problems more than your attempts to fix things, does not imply nor mean you never want to be listened to. Neither does it suggest that she detests solutions.

But therein lies the problem for many couples it seems.

Often when couples are exploring ways to deepen their relationship with each other, the conversation inevitably highlights our spouse’s needs, yet, not for long as we automatically shift the focus back onto ourselves.

It seems that so many of us are so afraid of missing out when we consider our spouse’s needs that we always ineluctably circle back to “what about my needs?”

Deepening a relationship does not start with your needs but the needs of the other.

It is in this process of serving the other in ways that meet their unique needs uniquely, even when reciprocation is uncertain, that the possibility of reciprocal love is sparked.

Acknowledging your spouse’s needs does not disclaim yours. We know that.

Understand that love and fear cannot coexist.

For where fear is, love is not.

And where love is, fear won’t be.

About the author 

The Relationship Guy

Gideon Hanekom is the founder of, a top-50 relationship blog (2021) and top-100 marriage blog (2021) which focuses on providing healthy relationship advice about love and life. He earned a Master's degree in theological studies before training as a professional counsellor almost 10 years ago. He also completed graduate studies in Psychology and is currently pursuing postgraduate Psychology studies at Massey University. He has been married to his wife for over seventeen years and is the dad of two children. His articles have been published on and The Good Men Project.

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