If you have followed me for a while you know the value I place on fatherhood and being an all-in dad for my kids. In my opinion, a big part of that is to show them how to be a loving and supportive partner to my wife, and since I haven’t dedicated as many words in this space to being a supportive husband…I decided to change that today.

My wife and I have been married for 11 years and together for 15. We dated for four years before getting married and enjoyed married life for five years before having kids. In that time I have learned a lot about being a supportive husband and how I can be better to her as a partner. I’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way and am very grateful for my wife’s patience and forgiveness. She inspires me to be better and to work harder. She brings out the best in me and could not be a more supportive and encouraging partner.

I believe that one of the biggest reasons I can be a good father to my children is because of her support of me as a co-parent. We communicate with each other, we discuss our concerns and we are nearly always on the same page when it comes to our kids. We don’t let our kids play us against each other or take sides. We present a united front and try hard to maintain the boundaries we have set.

A big reason why we work so well together is because we work hard at our relationship and meeting each other’s needs. I have had to learn a lot and work hard to be better at loving her the way she wants to be loved. Here are just some of the things I’ve learned that help me be a better partner to her:

  • Wake up early with the kids so she can get more sleep
  • Give her uninterrupted quiet time to recharge
  • Affirm, notice and appreciate the things she does for me and the kids
  • Do things around the house that I notice need to be taken care of and do it before she asks me
  • Listen and ask questions about how she’s feeling and what she needs and then do something about it
  • Learn about and take an interest in her passions
  • Write random love notes or texts just to let her know I’m thinking about her

As I’m writing this I’m realizing there are some things on this list I haven’t been doing as well lately or haven’t done in a while and definitely need get back to doing for her! And I do this because as important as it is for me to be a present and engaged father to my kids, it is equally important that I be an attentive and loving husband to my wife.

So…having said all this…I have a call to action. And I’m not going to pretend that I know every person or every couple’s situation. I know there are lots of broken hearts and relationships, dads fighting paternity battles and other circumstances and situations that arise. However…in general…I would like to ask and request that we as men and as dads do better. Support your partner more. Love them, serve them and treat them with the respect they deserve. Do things for them without expecting anything in return. Show your kids how to treat someone you love…because they are absolutely watching and absorbing how you treat others around you, especially the ones you love.

Let’s step up and make sure that we are not only being the men and fathers we are meant to be, but the husbands and partners our loved ones deserve as well.

This is fatherhood…