Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

How does your OH show affection?

(29 Posts)
mylaststraw Mon 06-Jun-16 05:30:55

I think he needs a few pointers (mind you, so do I, probably)! Sadly, all I can come up with is the booby-groping hug (which winds me up), and sometimes asking if I want a glass of wine while he's getting his beer. Help!!!

MysteriesOfTheOrganism Mon 06-Jun-16 05:48:05

Well, it depends on what kind of person you both are. Some people love touch, others are less tactile.

When you talk to one another (sitting on the sofa or at the dinner table), occasionally touch the other's hand or arm - just briefly. If you walk past each other in the house, touch their back or shoulders or (if they're sitting) give a little kiss on the top of their head. When you're out together link arms or hold hands.

You might also develop your touch skills (and improve your sex life) by doing sensate focusing exercises. See
counselling-matters.org.uk/sites/counselling-matters/files/SensateFocus.pdf

SpuriouserAndSpuriouser Mon 06-Jun-16 05:51:31

The first thing that I thought of is that sometimes my DP comes up and hugs me and makes a sort of "ghhhh" noise whilst rubbing my head. He also does the exact same thing to our dog.

However this is probably not the sort of example you are looking for. I think some men find it hard to show affection, or just generally as a couple you can get into a bit of a rut of taking each other for granted. Is that was is going on with you, or is there something deeper happening?

AlanPacino Mon 06-Jun-16 05:54:23

Dp says it a lot and cuddles me a lot.

TheNaze73 Mon 06-Jun-16 07:50:15

It's different I think in all relationships. I think actions speak far louder than words.
Each to their own but, I hear couples telling each other that they love each other, every 5 minutes & I find that quite vom enducing. Surely, if you say it all the time, it devalues the meaning of it?
A tap on the knee, a look and a smile or an action say it for me. Couldn't cope with too much fluff!

FuckingFattyBitch Mon 06-Jun-16 07:56:57

Yeah I agree it's different in all relationships. Me and DP pick on each other and call each other names. But we do tell each other we love each other once a day. (Because it's a competition between us to see who says it first)

PeaceOfWildThings Mon 06-Jun-16 08:03:17

DH is huggy, and has gradually learned to appreciate giving and receiving affectionate hugs, platonic hugs, hand holding and shoulder patting over the years, but I still get the inappropriate boob gropes and cleavage stare (but then, I didn't have a cleavage when we met or when we married, so I'm glad he enjoys how I look whatever my weight/shape!)
We went through a time when I was too harsh with batyling away his advances and he stopped altogether... So its been a slow road to build up the trust and confidence again, and teach him what affection is, and what's appropriate when.
He went through a stage of ordering me flowers, but I didn't like it so he stopped. He'll do things around the house, and that's also something he really appreciates from me, too. We're both pretty lazy so getting jobs done is a great practical way to show we care.
We'll chat sometimes, and sometimes joke about in a way that you can only do with an old friend.
Last year I started putting a blanket out on the grass in the garden and sleeping out on hot summer nights, he'd wake up, or get home late, and come and find me and snuggle up. He's started to bring blankets out for the two of us to sit on together, and snuggle up.

MissMelf Mon 06-Jun-16 08:48:48

He hugs me while i do the washing up, kisses me before he leaves for work and holds my hand when we sit on the sofa together smile

MissMelf Mon 06-Jun-16 08:58:39

And of course we tell each other daily we love each other, we buy each other presents(chocolate bars, clothing, biscuits, magazines), we compliment each other everyday, i always thank him when he does something around the house because i want him to know how much i appreciate his help, we always make sure we have a cuppa tea and dinner together once our daughter has gone to bed.

mylaststraw Mon 06-Jun-16 14:54:06

Mysteries -part of my problem is I do like being touched, but he seems to think it's all a prelude to sex!
Spuriouser - :-D can just see the head rubbing now! Probably some of the stuck in a rut problem, but I do try to avoid touchy feely stuff sometimes for the above reason... so it's interesting to see so many ppl mention platonic hugging/snuggling...
Do like the flowers and chocolate, tho :-)

kavanaughkj Mon 06-Jun-16 15:25:12

DH is super huggy, sometimes to the point where I want him to let go so I can get on with stuff! That said, if I don't get my bedtime cuddles something is seriously wrong with my day (or I've majorly pissed DH off!). He's very tactile and is constantly touching me or playing with my hair. In love languages, touch is definitely his most important; with me, I do like it but it's less important to me than it is to him. One of the best things he can do for me is to clear up after himself or make sure he keeps his budget up to date! That said, I do love a good cuddle when I'm in the mood for it, and appreciate that they don't all turn into an excuse to grope me.

I do find it close to impossible to walk up the stairs with him behind me without him grabbing my bum, though ...

kavanaughkj Mon 06-Jun-16 15:29:30

Meant to mention too - we do tell each other we love each other a lot - every night at least with a kiss before sleep. smile He's also very selfless - often puts my needs before his and likes to get me little treats now and then. I'm in no doubt at all of how much he loves me - I hope he feels the same.

frenchielala Mon 06-Jun-16 15:35:45

Give my DH a few drinks and it all comes out... mr lovey dovey. Whilst sober less so - I am the affectionate one, I always have been though.

Salene Mon 06-Jun-16 15:37:44

By sacrificing half his life away in ocean on a oil rig to provide a nice life for me and our kids. He misses his son terribly but makes that sacrifice because he loves us and wants us to have nice things

Piemernator Mon 06-Jun-16 16:36:45

Tea in bed every day
Rubs my feet
We have a very banter teasing kind of relationship, I would not be able to stand anyone super huggy or needful. We have been on holiday apart. My ex was a nice chap but so needful and full of grand romantic gestures I found it irritating.

LuluJakey1 Mon 06-Jun-16 19:13:47

Brings me tea and sometimes toast every morning before he goes to work
He's a cuddler and a handholder and a kisser- big hug and kiss when he comes in at night, always a kiss and cuddle in bed
Puts his hand on my leg
Tells me he loves me every day
We have a lot of jokes and teasing
Buy me odd bars of chocolate or flowers sometimes
Does his fair share with everything
Give him two pints and he does all of it together, promises wild sex, kisses me very determinedly and falls asleep very quickly as soon as he hits the bed

Sweetheartyparty76 Mon 06-Jun-16 19:22:12

I'm not very tactile and my DH always complains that I'm not very affectionate. I do love him very much but it was the way I was brought up. I do get more cuddles after a few glasses of wine though

LellyMcKelly Mon 06-Jun-16 21:30:52

He strokes my back to help me get to sleep. He spoons me (and this is going to sound weird but he seems to purr/make slow growling noises while he's doing it - like a contented tiger). He plugs in my phone when he sees it needs charging. He buys me raspberries. He closes his eyes when he kisses me. He smiles at me when he thinks I'm not looking. He makes me feel loved.

DontDead0penlnside Tue 07-Jun-16 11:19:06

Loads of little things, but when I am WFH, I get up later than he does, and will invariably go downstairs to find my teacup, teabag and teaspoon all ready to go by the kettle. Even if he's not had time to make his own drink that morning smile

AmyAmoeba Tue 07-Jun-16 14:11:04

Has anyone mentioned the five love languages (haven't read the thread yet)
www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/communication-and-conflict/learn-to-speak-your-spouses-love-language/understanding-the-five-love-languages
The author suggests there are 5 ways of showing love
Words of affirmation
Giving gifts
Acts of service
Physical touch
Quality time

so your DH might be showing love in a way that you don't feel it, and vice versa. The trick is to learn to show your partner love in their preferred modality.
My grandad showed my gran love by changing the oil in her car (acts of service) but she'd probably have preferred a box of chocolates (gifts)

mylaststraw Tue 07-Jun-16 16:11:57

Hmm, lots of good stuff here, thanks everyone. I read the article, thanks AmyA. It was quite thought provoking, but after reading it, I think we're doomed :-D

F33lingFruity Tue 07-Jun-16 23:46:05

Spend quality time together

Spend time apart doing things we like to do individually

Listen, laugh, enjoy, help and support each other

Appreciate each other

Zaphodsotherhead Wed 08-Jun-16 10:37:33

Occasionally kicks the tyres on my car and says 'your tread is barely legal, you ought to get that seen to'.

I was on the verge of calling a stop to it - but when I recently had to have my old dog PTS he texted me and was just so lovely...

I think he has trouble with face-to-face affection. So I'm gritting my teeth and seeing how it goes.

Thunderwing Wed 08-Jun-16 11:42:37

Oh dear god. I'm genuinely struggling with this one....confused

Day to day there's not really much in evidence of DH's affection, if he wants to DTD then he will take my hand and stick it on his crotch subtle, no and once in a blue moon he might actually just give me a cuddle for no other reason than to just cuddle. these are rarer than hen's teeth

Um, he takes me to the cinema a few times a year even though he hates going. There, that's affectionate, right? hmm

Nabootique Wed 08-Jun-16 12:01:51

I was just going to mention love languages, but Amy beat me to it. OP, if you mean "doomed" because you are different, then that's not the case! It is possible to compromise if you just talk about it. Once you know the other person's "language" it's easier to make them feel valued, even if it isn't physically affectionate.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now