From a reader, THANK YOU for sharing!!!! I SO totally relate to her mindset, and I did the EXACT same thing in the past! I LOVE what this wife has learned and the way she shares it is so relatable. I know this post will bless MANY, MANY other wives! Great job!!!!!
I have a story that I think you might appreciate.
One of the biggest problems in my marriage is me assuming that my husband is mad at me. If I don’t understand his behavior, I assume it is about his disappointment in me. He’s tired and quiet from work, I assume he’s upset because I didn’t make the kids clean up all their toys. He accidentally forgot his phone, I assume he’s mad that I didn’t pay enough attention to him the day before and doesn’t want me to be able to get in touch with him. It never ends with just the assumption that he’s upset. Then I get upset that he’s upset and won’t talk to me about it and give me a chance to defend myself.
If only he knew how hard I worked to get the house as clean as it is. I wasn’t ignoring him, doesn’t he know that I have a lot on my plate? And try as hard as I might, I can’t get everything done while he’s out. Left arguing with myself for a while, I will suddenly remember that my husband isn’t perfect, and maybe I could be a better wife if he did X, Y, and Z better. Then when I see him, and he asks what the matter with me is, I am ready with all my ammo to tell him what he needs to change to help me be a better wife to him.
Last year, I started reading your blog, and while my story isn’t exactly the same as yours, my eyes were opened to my extreme disrespect toward my husband.
THINGS I HAVE LEARNED
First, my husband is an adult.
If he’s upset with me, he can tell me on his own. I don’t need to think for him. When I confessed to him what I was doing his reply was
“Wow, you give me credit for thinking a lot more than I do.”
Sometimes he really is just tired, just forgetful, or just quiet. There is no ulterior motive. It is disrespectful to not take him at face value.
Second, if I have to make excuses to myself, I know that I’m not treating him as I think he should be treated. Instead of wasting time coming up with excuses, I could more constructively use that time to clean up the mess, or take care of stuff so that when he comes home I can spend time with him.
Last, if I feel that we must talk about my perceived issues, I should start saying “I know the house was a mess yesterday, did that bother you?” instead of “Maybe this house wouldn’t be such a mess if you pitched in more.”
However, when I began seeing just how messed up I was, my husband was deployed, so I had some information but no chance to try it out.
A NEW BEGINNING
Last night I got my chance. I had exciting news that I wanted to share. My husband was building Legos with my son, so I thought I’d call my sister and share the excitement with her. I thought I’d probably leave a message, and be back downstairs in less than fifteen minutes. Fifty-two minutes later I hung up the phone. Knowing I had spent almost an hour of precious Sunday time not paying attention to my husband I went to find him to see if he wanted to do something.
He was nowhere to be found. In my head, he left without a word because he was feeling ignored. And I stopped right there. He did poke his head into the room while I was on the phone, maybe he wanted me to know where he was going, but he didn’t want to interrupt. In fact, he did tell our son where he was going, it’s not his fault our son forgot that happened.
Then I remembered, we did have something that belonged to our neighbor that we no longer needed, he probably returned it and then began chatting. His absence was just him living his life, not a direct result of being mad at me. At least that was my new story until he told me different.
Then, instead of coming up with excuses and things that he’d done to take time away from us, I used the time that I had to get stuff done, so that we could have some time for just the two of us when he came home.
Instead of coming home to a fight, my husband came home to a wife that made sure we’d be able to have some time for each other. Instead of a fight, I got quality time with my husband.
The difference is night and day.
RESOURCES and RELATED POSTS
Shuanti Feldhahn’s book “For Women Only” – will help you understand how men think and how DIFFERENT they are from women! (From a Christian perspective)