It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Christmas time for me often includes stirring toffee or sitting by the fire watching a cheesy Christmas movie with my mom. We know it’s predictable, but that doesn’t stop us from having a great time! My dad will inevitably poke fun and complain about the acting and the set and the predictable plot. But to no avail. We will watch hours of Hallmark movies with frosted small towns, cheesy romance, and of course the true meaning of Christmas.
A lot of women I know love “Hallmark-esque” movies, especially around Christmas time! If you are like my dad, you may think this is a little bit ridiculous. What is the point of watching a movie if you know how it’s going to end every time!?
Let’s take a step back. Why do so many women love the cheesy rom-com? Why is there such a market for Hallmark style Christmas movies? Is there something we can learn from this phenomenon?
I’ve discovered there is a lot to be learned from these cheesy movies about what your wife wants. I’ve distilled my own experience and research into what I call the “Hallmark experience”. Here are the 5 reasons why your wife loves Hallmark movies, and how you can give her the “Hallmark experience” this holiday season.
It’s about the Aesthetic
Christmas movies are all about the aesthetic. They will have snow covered cottages, fireplace coco breaks, cute jackets and scarves, and all the fun details that make it feel like Christmas! For a lot of adults, the magic of Christmas can wear thin as we now have so many holiday stressors. A cheesy movie is often an easy way to infuse some Christmas spirit back into the season!
The “Hallmark Experience”
Take the initiative and help your spouse feel the Christmas spirit! Put up some lights or decorations, get the fire going, or bake something yummy. It can be a heavy load trying to make Christmas magical for the whole family. Sometimes, a wife needs a break from being the jolly one. Here are a few more ideas on creating the Christmas Aesthetic in your home.
- Light a holiday scented candle
- Hang Christmas lights in your bedroom
- Make her some hot coco once the kids are in bed
- Offer to shop for the Christmas presents
- Challenge her to a snowball fight (let her win)
The Magic of Being Romanced
One of the big pulls of a rom-com is the romance. There is Heath Ledger singing in the bleachers, John Cusack holding his boombox, and the classic “foot-pop” of Princess Diaries. I know it can seem pretty cheesy, but when we get to the bottom of it we all want to feel loved. These romantic gestures can seem silly to try in real life, but they can be a sign of attention, love, and effort. Putting in the effort to be romantic shows you care enough to put in the effort, and even that you are willing to put yourself out there (at risk of seeming a tad ridiculous) to show your love.
The “Hallmark” Experience
So what are Hallmark level grand gestures you can show your wife? The idea is to do something you know she likes. It’s going out of your way to do something a little out of the ordinary. Here are a few ideas, but you are going to have to do some thinking to decide what will be the most swoon worthy for your wife!
- Slow dance in the kitchen as you’re cleaning up
- Bring home flowers randomly
- Write a note about the color of her eyes (or another attribute you love) and leave it in the mailbox
- Make her breakfast in bed on a saturday morning; let her enjoy it while you tend the kids!
The Comfort of Reliability
Hallmark style movies are known for being very predictable. A man and a woman will meet in an unforeseen way, then start to fall in love. But then oh no!, miscommunication or career differences or some catastrophe will threaten the relationship. Will they ever make it?! Of course they will. The third act resolution will have our hero sweeping back in, making amends, and getting the girl. Happily ever after.
So why do we like watching this plot over and over again? I believe it’s because there’s a part of us that likes to know where it’s going. We want to know that even though there will be conflict, he will always come back and everything will be alright. There is safety and comfort in a little predictability.
The “Hallmark” Experience
This one may be a little harder to create in your life. I don’t know that I can give you a list of ways to help your wife feel secure in your love. But the one tip I can give: be consistent, reliable, and honest. Give her every chance of experiencing you coming back and showing her that she can rely on you. I don’t mean starting fights for the heck of it, but don’t hide your feelings trying to appease her. Instead, learn to disagree civilly with each other. Learn how to communicate to her that even when you disagree, you love each other and you will still love her when all of this is done. If you would like to learn more about creating stability, check out our communication tab!
The Woman at the Center of the Story
I challenge you to find a romantic comedy who’s main character is not a woman. Most of these main characters are busy, underappreciated women who discover themselves over the course of the movie. Many women feel they can relate in a way to these busy women who get lost in their work or family. It can feel gratifying to watch a woman like ourselves discover her own passion and desires.
The “Hallmark” Experience
So how do you help your wife have this Hallmark experience? Especially around the holidays, it can be hard for many to take some time for themselves. I can give a few suggestions below of how you can help your wife get a little “me time.” However, in a much larger sense, many mothers feel like they get lost in the needs of their family year round. Encourage your wife to pursue her passions. Help her feel like she has space to explore her own identity outside the family. For more help on being yourself in a marriage, refer your wife (or yourself) to our post on Differentiation.
- Offer to watch the kids/make time so she can exercise
- Fill her a bubble bath
- Give her a gift to encourage her passion (a camera, art supplies, a gift certificate to learn a new skill, or simply some time where you will take care of things so she can do something for herself)
The Man Who Will Fight for His Woman
Lastly, we want a man who will fight for us. That third act always hits when the man runs through the airport, or stands out in the rain, or somehow defies the odds to profess his love to his girl. Sometimes, we can lose that magic in the day to day happenings of marriage. As amazing as it is to always be around each other, well, we are still always around each other. We want security (I mentioned it above) but we also want someone who values our love. We want to know that our husband feels lucky to have us.
The “Hallmark” Experience
So how do we provide this last Hallmark experience? Well, you tell her. You pay attention to her. You keep kindling that spark that got you together in the first place. As the two of you grow together, you keep learning about her. You do all the above suggestions. Most women don’t actually want a man to defend her honor or get jealous when a man looks at her; what she wants to know is that the love of her life values her for all that she is.
Written by Amanda Severson with Get Your Marriage On!
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