Our fall favorites are here! 🍂

I wake up at 6 a.m. with a toddler sleeping on my neck. Not my chest, not tucked into my arm, but actually ON my jugular. My 18-month-old is this sort of sleeper (if you can call it sleeping) and if I dare move her, she turns into that sand creature thing from Aladdin that bellows “WHO DISTURBS MY SLUMBER?!” Unfortunately, logical thinking isn’t my strong suit before the sun comes up, so I groan and push her off my thyroid. 

Her wrath ensues, complete with fiery, flashing eyes and a swirl of righteous fury.

As luck would have it, my husband is working this day—a Saturday—and he tosses me a half-amused grimace that says, “Sorry . . . but dang I’m glad I’m leaving right now,” as he heads out the door at seven. 

Super. I’m going it alone with the overtired creature from Planet Exhausted, who’s quickly joined by her older siblings looking for breakfast and water and that thing they were SURE was on the kitchen counter last week so where is it, Mom? 

I sigh, and fumble around the kitchen for caffeine while the baby howls on my hip. 

I’m tired. I am ALWAYS tired. 

And I’m willing to bet some variation on this theme has played out in your own home—maybe it’s mid-act this very moment. 

Husbands, you can help. So listen up—this next part is for you. 

If your marriage is like most, your wife handles the lion’s share of the “day-to-day” stuff, right? She probably keeps track of when it’s Junior’s turn to bring snack to practice . . . drives carloads of kids to and from school . . . quiets the baby and runs to Target several times per week (you’ll never understand it, just quit trying). She probably buys the birthday gifts for the kids and the cards for your mother (you’re welcome), and does a thousand other unseen things in a day that keep your home humming. You know that “mental load of motherhood” phrase you hear tossed around? That’s this. Her wheelhouse. 

Before you protest, I know you do plenty in the partnership, too. You’re the solid, dependable constant she and the kids need every single day. You kill spiders and fix running toilets . . . build treehouses and coach the t-ball team (sometimes still in your work clothes) . . . play catch with the boy and let little girls make you pretty with blue eyeshadow. You’re a provider of so much more than a paycheck. You’re the moon to their stars (probably hung it, in fact), and you protect the hearts in your home fiercely and faithfully. 

In your marriage, you and your wife both do a lot. Let’s get that out in the open.  

But your wife? She is really freaking tired. Like, constantly, ridiculously, outrageously tired. Here’s how you can help: 

1. Let her nap
When my husband got home the afternoon of the aforementioned baby-sleeping-on-neck day, he took one look at me and said, “What do you need?” 

“A nap,” I replied instantly. “I really just need a nap.” 

And she does. She’s had kids climbing on her all day. She’s fixed 14 rounds of snacks and made lunch everyone complained about. She’s broken up fights, picked up toys, wiped faces and bottoms, and heard her name a couple hundred times in the span of a few hours. She’s tired, I promise. There’s nothing more luxurious than handing over the reins to a willing partner, closing the bedroom door on the noise, and climbing into a still-unmade bed at 5 p.m., even if it’s just for 20 minutes (two hours is better). 

2. Bring her caffeine
Some days, my husband will call as he’s leaving work and ask if I want anything, which is code for, “Do you want me to drive through McDonald’s and get you a dollar Coke?” Sometimes I’ll say no, but 100 percent of the time, what I really mean is YES. Guys, she needs the Coke, or the Venti Iced Caramel Macchiato, or the gas station Big Gulp. She might decline if you ask her first, but if you bring it home? She’s gonna drink it and enjoy it, even if it’s under fake protest. 

3. Plan a date night—and arrange the sitter
Remember when you were young and falling in love and you’d do things like take her out to a sit-down restaurant or go see a show together or take long, aimless drives to nowhere talking about hopes and dreams and your plans for the future? She still wants to do those things sometimes . . . even though it practically takes an act of Congress to make it happen today. What’s more, she wants you to make it happen. Part of the reason she’s so tired is because she’s struggling to keep the part of her that’s not labeled “Mom” above water; taking her out and romancing her a bit helps her find it, and handling all the details like calling the sitter? She might hear angels singing.  

4. Text her
Days spent with kids, while wonderful and worthwhile, can suck the grown-up right out of a person. She probably finds herself saying things like “Mommy’s gotta go potty quick” and “How do we ask?” and “You’re being too loud” whenever she speaks. Contact with other adults is limited, and it can start to make her feel a little disconnected with reality. So, while you’re at work conversing and interacting with other adults, finding a minute to send her a text or—better yet—give her a quick call can remind her she’s a grown-up capable of discussing things other than bathroom habits.  

5. Touch her
Whoa there, cowboy—this doesn’t mean necessarily mean that. But giving your wife a long hug or a proper kiss when you see she’s weary can breathe some life back into her body. She wants to feel attractive and desired, even in her exhausted, possibly unshowered state. Rub her back without her asking. Put your arm around her in the church pew. Hold her hand while you’re walking through the parking lot of the grocery store. Even though she’s tired, she craves the connection only the two of you share. Plus, there’s nothing more intimate than a partner who can tease the woman out of the mother. And who knows, it might just lead to that . . . 

As long as she’s not too tired.

You may also like:

To the Tired Mom in the Middle of the Night

Why Your Wife Seems Angry and How to Fix It

Why Tired Mothers Stay Up So Late

Want more stories of love, family, and faith from the heart of every home, delivered straight to you? Sign up here! 

But your wife? She is really freaking tired. Like, constantly, ridiculously, outrageously tired. Here’s how you can help. #motherhood #tiredmom #exhausted

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Carolyn Moore

Carolyn has served as Editor-in-Chief of Her View From Home since 2017. A long time ago, she worked in local TV news and fell in love with telling stories—something she feels grateful to help women do every day at HVFH. She lives in flyover country with her husband and five kids but is really meant to be by the ocean with a good book and a McDonald's fountain Coke. 

You Are Worth Every Sacrifice

In: Baby, Motherhood
Mother holding infant, black-and-white photo

The best part of me is my son. Being a new mom is exhausting yet so rewarding. They say when he sleeps, you sleep. But I don’t want to miss any cuddles, so when he sleeps, I snuggle him up tight.  Being a new mom is lonely and so fulfilling at the same time. I’ve never felt so alone, but I’ve also never felt like my life had a purpose until now.  I wouldn’t trade my loneliness for a large number of friends. Although having some friends, even if very few, helps. Sometimes it takes being lonely to bring the most...

Keep Reading

All I Could Do Was Make It to Church Today

In: Faith, Motherhood
Close up of man holding baby in his arms in church pew with kids in background

All I can do is make it to church today. It was the final thought that shut the door on all the other thoughts this morning. The thoughts that said I don’t look good enough. I should put on makeup. I should wear something nicer. I should find a way to paint my nails without them getting smudged up from holding a baby before they dry. The thoughts that said I am not doing good enough. I should have made supper last night. I shouldn’t have used that glass pan that shattered in the oven while trying to steam bake...

Keep Reading

3 Things Toddlers Teach Us if We Slow Down and Notice

In: Motherhood, Toddler
Toddler and mother hold dandelion flower

The saying goes, “Learn from your elders.” I’ve heard it said throughout my childhood and into my adult life. There is a lot to learn from people who are older than you, especially from their mistakes. However, I’ve come to realize that I can learn a great deal about living in the present from my gutsy toddler. Being a parent allows—more like forces—you to live in the moment. Toddlers are temperamental, tenacious, tender-hearted, and if they are anything like my daughter, they are also incredibly talkative. Their mood swings hit you in the face, sometimes quite literally with the unwanted...

Keep Reading

I Should Have Stayed with You Longer Tonight

In: Motherhood
Little boy sleeping with night light above his head

Sweet child, I’m sorry I didn’t stay cuddled up with you longer tonight. I quickly tucked you into bed because I was exhausted. The night didn’t go as planned, and I was frazzled by the time we got to the end of the day. All I wanted was for everyone to be in bed. I wanted the house to be silent so I could hear myself think. I wanted a minute to catch my breath. RELATED: Why Tired Moms Stay Up Late But I should have stayed with you. I know you needed that extra time to unwind from your...

Keep Reading

The Greatest Gift We Can Give Someone Is to Include Them

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Female friends laughing together outside

The greatest gift we can give someone is to include them. Never have I felt more isolated and excluded than I did as a new mom. With two babies born a year apart, socializing was impossible. I couldn’t hold a conversation with my kids in tow. And they were always in tow. In those early years of motherhood, something like a hair appointment meant more than just a cut and color. It was an opportunity for uninterrupted, adult conversation. After a couple of years of baby talk and mom buns, I was intensely in need of all three. I booked...

Keep Reading

Dear New NICU Mom, You Are Strong

In: Baby, Motherhood
Baby girl in NICU, color photo

Author’s note: September is NICU awareness month. As I reflect on our four-year anniversary of becoming NICU parents, these are the thoughts that came to me. According to the March of Dines, about 14.4 percent of births result in a NICU stay, so this one is for you and all your beautiful NICU babies.  Hey mama, I know you never thought you’d be here. Even if you had a warning of a potential stay, it’s not what you pictured when you pictured motherhood. None of us did. Sure, you were nervous about the birth of your baby. Will it hurt?...

Keep Reading

What Baby Books Don’t Tell You about Motherhood

In: Motherhood
Mother hugging toddler daughter in kitchen

The thing the baby books don’t tell you about leaving the hospital is that two new people emerge. Yes, you’re going to come out of there with another person, but you’re going to be a different person too. The world changes in the matter of a moment. Some part of me was buried, laid to rest back in that stark birthing room after I gave birth to my first child. A new person emerged who was intensely immersed in his little toes and the piercing cries, waiting with bated breath to catch the first smile. The feeling of mine-ness and...

Keep Reading

Why This Blogger’s “Dear Husband” Poem Has the World Sobbing

In: Living, Marriage, Motherhood
Father holding newborn in bathtub with siblings nearby

It’s one thing to read an article that gets you in the feels . . . but when you read those words aloud? It brings the emotions to a whole other level.  An Irish radio host from Corks RedFM proved that this week when she read a poem live on air about motherhood, marriage, and the bittersweet reality of time passing quickly. The viral piece was written by blogger Jess Urlichs, and it perfectly captures what it feels like to be thankful and heartbroken at the same time.  Watch radio personality Vic on the RedFM Breakfast with KC show read...

Keep Reading

A Mother’s Heart is Never Ready to Let Go

In: Motherhood, Teen
photo of a teen packing up his truck

Although I knew it was coming soon, I didn’t know today would be the day. I’ve pushed it to the back of my mind, knowing my heart wasn’t prepared. But maybe it never would be . . . Because I guess a mother’s heart is never really ready to let go. While I’ve dealt with these emotions before and it broke me . . . there’s something about the finality of the closing of a chapter in parenthood that cuts a little deeper when you watch your baby pack their belongings to move away. You know from the moment they...

Keep Reading

The Sink Is Always Full and So Is My Heart

In: Motherhood
Sink full of dishes, color photo

The sink is always so full. No matter how hard I try. No matter how much time I spend trying to empty it. No matter how wrinkly and wet my hands have gotten throughout the day. It’s always, always full. I can’t help but feel like this is such a representation of our world. It’s not just that kitchen sink that is always full. It’s our calendars. It’s our schedules. It’s our heads. It’s our hearts. All of it. All the time. There is always so much to do and somewhere to go. There is always something that needs to...

Keep Reading