"Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land."
Why mention this lady's husband in this section where the lady herself is being praised? It seems that this verse DOES, in fact, praise Mrs. Proverbs 31. Could her husband sit with the elders and be in counsel at the city gates if she were a BAD wife? Not if she were so bad that everyone knew it. And maybe not if she were bad enough that only her husband knew it. If he knew things at home were not taken care of, he would be distracted, maybe always having to come home because of bad circumstances happening there. And if his wife had a bad reputation in the city, her husband would be laughed at for thinking he could be in a position of power.
I guess this is the Biblical version of "Behind every good man there is a good woman", because this woman did her husband well, and his heart trusted in her. Could his heart trust in her if she were mess? Children running amuck? I don't think we even have to get to the "servants rioting, police being called to her house" kind of mess. I believe that all it would take would be for her to not be running things at home very well for her husband to not be completely confident that she could handle things while he was away. My husband tells me about wives who make life miserable for their husbands at work. Always calling, always demanding, always needing this or that. That does not reflect well on the husband. It makes him look weak, and it also puts questions in the minds of the people he works with as to whether or not he can REALLY handle more responsibility.
Can my husband's heart trust me? In most things I would say yes. But is there an area where his heart trusts me less? Do I have room for improvement which could free him up to advance at work better? One thing I know, I better make sure my part is being taken care of at home so that my husband can be respected in the gates where he's employed. To do any less would not be doing my husband well all the days of his life.