June 7, 2022

A Man’s Biggest Emotional Need

Written by Shana Schutte

When a woman respects her husband, she recognizes that she is not only helping him, but helping herself.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – June 7, 2022

God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Genesis 1:27

If a group of women assemble and start talking about what the Bible says about how women need to treat men, someone in the group will eventually mention Ephesians 5:33 which says that wives should respect their husbands. 

Then, at least one woman in the group will respond negatively to the mention of this Scripture because respecting men became equated with being a doormat, when nothing could be further from the truth. 

Respecting a man has everything to do with being an empowered, gracious woman who knows how to meet the emotional needs of her husband, to build up—rather than tear down—her relationship and the most important man in her life. Just as a woman’s main emotional need is to be loved, a man’s main emotional need is to be respected. 

In fact, some studies say that if a man had to choose between being loved and being respected, he would choose respect because what love is to a woman, respect is to a man. A wise woman recognizes this and does what she can to meet her man’s main emotional need to be respected. This is God’s order of things. When a man and a woman love one another in action by meeting one another’s core emotional needs, it encourages them both and creates a relationship of safety, love, trust, and cherishing. 

But women (present company included) often don’t understand what it means to disrespect a man. Here are three practical ways women can disrespect their husbands without realizing it. 

Tease him, put him down, scold, or humiliate him in front of others

Because men can be more performance oriented than women, when a wife does any of the above things in public, it makes a man feel as if he has failed, which can cut him to the core and make him feel insecure, disrespected, and dishonored. 

On the contrary, if a woman praises her husband in public, it makes him feel respected. 

Reminding him that he’s a failure

When a woman uses phrases such as, “I knew you’d forget” “You never get it right” “I should just do it myself” or “I knew I couldn’t count on you” it can also make her husband feel as if he’s failed. 

A wise woman knows that when she needs to share a concern about her husband’s behavior with him or needs to talk to him about something she wants him to improve, she knows that how she communicates her needs and desires will help heal or hurt her marriage. 

Being impossible to please

Deep down a good man wants to be his wife’s hero. He wants to know that he is making the woman he loves happy. But when his wife consistently complains and nothing her husband does is good enough, when she is demanding and dissatisfied, a man will take his wife’s unhappiness as a clear sign that he isn’t measuring up which is disrespectful to him. 

When a woman respects her husband, she recognizes that she is not only helping him, but helping herself because a man will often internalize his wife’s happiness as his responsibility. 

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18).


Lord, please help me to respect the important man in my life. Help me to be a woman of grace. I know that you want me to learn how to meet my man’s needs. Amen.


Build your man up in public and point out something good about him to others.

Related Reading

1 Corinthians 11:11-12; Galatians 3:28; Ephesians 5:22-24

Worship Resource

Warren Barfield: Love Is Not a Fight


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