My husband is young and motivated and loves to work and be successful. However, in his mind it’s all for me (and our baby). He just absolutely glows with so much pride when I hug and kiss him and tell him how proud I am of his ambition and efforts. Even though he enjoys working, I know it’s difficult and relentless at times. I have also noticed that the more I build him up, the closer he wants to be to me and the more time he makes for me. I think it also lessens his burden as a provider to feel appreciated and to know that I understand his motivations and am supporting him in his endeavors to take care of me and our child.
Have you talked about specific times in which to spend time together? My husband and I love to talk, talk, talk (which I guess is somewhat unusual for a man, but he loves to share about his day and ask about mine and discuss bigger issues we face) so it’s very relaxing and relationship building for us to even just lay on our bed or the sofa and chat for as long as time allows.
My husband also feels very taken care of and loved when I do special things for him, whether it’s making his favorite meals or leaving little love notes around for him to find. It helps him feel very connected to me and our little home, even though much of his time and energy is work-related. He says he loves to look down and see a note from me or a picture or even his phone going off with a text message from me. It keeps the focus of his work on “why” he is working as hard as he is. Sometimes when I know he won’t have TOO much work at home that evening, I’ll go to Blockbuster and rent a couple DVDs that I know he loves and will enjoy having time to watch with me (which also means time spent cuddling together).
On the weekends, especially before I got pregnant, we would make it a point to do something fun on both Saturday and Sunday. Friday nights we generally hang out and rest and he re-charges (indoor picnics are fun!), but Saturday and Sunday are meant to be very connecting for the two of us. We go to the park, we’ve been apple-picking, we play kickball with neighbor kids, we go to the movies, we visit my parents, adult siblings and play with my neice, we see friends, we go for walks, we share meals and go out to dinner together. We love festivals and exploring new tastes and new cultures. We want to take a one day road trip and possibly stay at a bed and breakfast this next weekend. It helps the week go faster when I know his energy will be on me when the weekend comes. Also, at night we make it a point to touch each other in sleep. (Either fall asleep cuddling or holding hands, etc.) It makes both of us feel connected and supported and ready for another day of work and some separation.
Maybe try to show your love and adoration for him by building him up and constantly appreciating his efforts in a sincere way. Instead of pushing him away, I think that will draw him closer to you and you just might get more time to spend with him.