How to Help My Wife Who’s Hurting on Mother’s Day
Men, if you’re reading this, then one of two things happened:
1) Your wife has lost a loved one in some way, whether it was a child through still birth, miscarriage, or infertility, or perhaps her mother or father recently passed away. Regardless, your wife is hurting, and thinking about celebrating on Mother’s Day just doesn’t cut it. She’d rather close the curtains or not talk to anyone at all, maybe even you.
2) You know someone, maybe a friend or family member, who fits that description, and you have absolutely no clue what to do.
So, what do you do?
As a man whose wife has lost two children and also her own mother, I’d like to write a little bit of encouragement for you today as your heart breaks for your bride.
First, be present. For some, she will just want you to be near her, to hold her, to pay attention to her on that day especially. Although your heart may be hurting due to the loss, know that your role from God is to your wife first, so love her as Christ loves the Church. Put down your phone (literally! Put it in another room. If someone needs you for an emergency, they can contact your wife).
Turn off your TV show so you can listen to your wife, both to what she says and what she doesn’t say. If she wants to watch TV, great! Let her pick. If she wants to garden, put on your work clothes.
If she wants to do any of the ideas my wife posted in her article, then you better make that happen. God gave you your wife, so love her by being present.
Second, buy a present. She may not want a Mother’s Day card. She may not (read: certainly) want a vacuum cleaner or household appliance. She may not even want the traditional flowers.
But you can be thoughtful in the pain to bring a smile to her heart. A thoughtful present communicates “I’m thinking about you, specifically, in our journey.” Maybe the gift is a charm necklace with a charm representing something thoughtful or your child’s birthstone. Maybe the gift is a handmade painting by you. Maybe it’s a spa day gift or some gift cards for you and her to go have fun at a putt putt place or bowling or water adventure. Whatever it is, it needs to be poignant, not pithy nor popular. I’ve bought Mary small poignant gifts. One year, I bought her a locket with Alex’s footprints.
Third, pray. Pray for her. Seriously, when was the last time you prayed for her besides a quick “Lord, give her a good day, amen”? Pray for your wife. She needs it. Also, the opportunity may present itself for you to pray over her. Out loud. You may be saying, “That’s not me. I don’t pray out loud.” Sir, your wife is worth it. She’s going to be with you until death do you part, so you better start praying for her. Lead her as the spiritual shepherd of your family.
If you do at least one of those things, I think you’ll communicate, “I remember, and I care. You matter more than anything else in this world, and I’m here for you forever.”
For more help in the hurt, go to releasingarrows.org.