One of the best lessons I ever learned: men need adventure. It makes sense. That’s why most men love action movies, can quote Braveheart at length, and can spend days watching TV of gold digging or extreme survival off the land. They want that spark that excitement. They want to believe that they could do that, go there, and succeed. They crave a sense of self-worth and a thrill to excite their lives.
Not all adventure is jumping out of planes though. Or speed racing. Or bungee jumping. Maybe camping, fishing, or bowling. Adventure means different things to different men. My brother, for example, is into all kinds of cop stuff. He enjoys ride-alongs with his buddies, checking out the new sirens or equipment in catalogs, or going shooting with his wife. My dad loves playing bass in his spare time, jamming with the church band, or getting together and rocking with his old band mates. My brother in law loves hockey and soccer video games. And, my husband loves HALO and travel.
There’s no problem with adventure until we women get involved. I have had friends squelch any fun their husbands have had and sense of adventure, which has led to other problems in their marriages. The husband may withdraw emotionally and resent his spouse. I have seen men bad-mouth their wives, spending extended (unnecessary) hours at the office, start drinking, or have affairs. Others don’t have affairs, but their relationship deteriorates so much that it eventually all fails apart. It’s not extreme in every case, of course, but the relationship shifts to no longer best friends and lovers and thrill-seekers but to roommates and acquaintances. The marriage becomes more child-parent than husband and wife as equals.
I blog about this today because it’s a reminder for myself. The video games are wearing on my husband, and he wants to get away. You know, I do to. We use to travel all the time when we were first together. It wasn’t just his adventure; it was mine. Kids haven’t gotten in the way of that, like it has for so many others. Instead, it’s our mortgage and property taxes. We’re distracted by his MBA schedule and my new business. Life wants to push us into roles of mediocrity and consistency of punching the clock and taking stock. It seems to smother fun so that we cannot find it.
So, I remind myself that he needs adventure. I want to always be his beloved, his confidante, best friend, and lover. I want to be the girl he adores and dreams with. I want to be the one to fulfill his deepest desire for adventure. It doesn’t need to be to Africa or Australia. It doesn’t need to be a week long getaway to the Bahamas or Europe. We can travel a city over and spend the night. We can take a day trip from Houston to Galveston or The Woodlands. We can just drive for a day and see where it takes us. A thirty dollar gallon of gas date can strengthen our marriage and give him the adventure he wants? I am in! (WAY better than bungee jumping for me!)
I encourage you, dear wives, to think of your husbands. Encourage his healthy adventure, or find ways to work it into your budget and relationship. If your marriage is healthy and thriving: make every effort to keep it that way! Is it strained? Remember what he first loved, and try to renew that spark. Or, maybe, he can find a new adventure. Support him and cheer for his interests that he may be cheerful that you are on his team today and forever.
Blessings to those who have served our great country. We are grateful for your service.
“The Lord bless you and keep you, the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)