DISCLAIMER: Women are allowed to complain about abuse, addiction, adultery and abandonment to their friends, and they are are justified in doing so. This post is about complaining about picking up socks and not fixing the sink.
According to Ginny at Ruth Blog, it is wrong. And I agree.
Does this sound familiar? “My husband drives me crazy! How hard can it be to pick up a sock and put it in the laundry? I mean, it’s not like he’s actually busy–he hasn’t fixed the leaky sink that I mentioned two months ago, or mowed the lawn, or cleaned up that mess in the garage. And now that football has started, I never see him…”
I used to join in with this sort of talk. I considered it “casual complaining”–nothing serious, certainly. Sometimes I would even trot out my husband’s faults in an effort to sympathetically let a girlfriend know that her husband isn’t all that bad–all husbands “do stuff like that”. I hoped it would make her see that it really wasn’t worth complaining about. But that probably wasn’t the effect; my “complaining” ended up justifying her complaining.
Then something I heard (on the radio? at a seminar?) made me think about what I was doing to my husband. It was terrible–taking private faults and making them public; taking small lapses and making them seem big; taking a man whom I love and respect, and denigrating him, belittling him. And worst of all, I was doing it where he couldn’t even defend himself. Just terrible.
So I stopped. It wasn’t too hard, if I caught myself starting to talk that way. The problem was that often times I wouldn’t even notice what I was doing until I was already well into it. Now it has been many years, and I believe it has really made a difference. I found that changing my words changed my attitude; changing my attitude changed my actions; changing my actions changed his attitude; changing his attitude changed his actions. Win, win, win!!!
Wow, now that woman will have a husband who will love her to the ends of the Earth. And for good reason!
Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Laura’s book about the care and feeding of husbands:
“A good man is hard to find, not to keep.” That sentence should really make you stop and think. As a radio talk-show host/psychotherapist, I’ve got to tell you how remarkably true and sad it is that so many women struggle to hold on to some jerk, keep giving an abusive or philandering man yet another chance, have unprotected sex with some guy while barely knowing his last name, agree to shack up and risk making babies with some opportunist or loser, all in a pathetic version of a pursuit for love, but will resent the hell out of treating a decent, hardworking, caring husband with the thoughtfulness, attention, respect, and affection he needs to be content.
It boggles my mind.
What further puts me in boggle overdrive is how seemingly oblivious and insensitive many women are to how destructive they are being to their men and consequently to their marriages. Women will call me asking me if it’s alright to go off on extended vacations “without him” when they want some freedom or R&R, or if it’s okay to cut him off from sex because they’re annoyed about something or just too tired from their busy day, or if they really have to make him a dinner when he gets home from work because it’s just too tedious to plan meals, or if it’s okay to keep stuff from him (like family or financial issues) because his input is unnecessary, or if they’re really obligated to spend time with his family (in-laws or stepkids), or if they really have to show interest in his hobbies when they’re bored silly by them, or — well, you get the idea.
I spent the weekend listening to Dr. Laura’s “The Proper Caring and Feeding of Husbands” as well, so I am really positive about women in general right now. This book is the best book for women to read to know how to handle themselves around men. The fact that so many women bought it says a lot about women.
What are my thoughts? I really don’t think that women should say hurtful things about men who love them in public or even in private to other women. Yet so many (all?) of them seem to think that it is normal. But it really hurts men emotionally. Needing approval and encouragement from the woman he loves is the man’s biggest emotional need. I think men do a lot of things to protect, provide and lead that women just don’t appreciate – probably because they don’t understand how a man’s role really is.
I think that there are times when some women have a double-standard that allows them to complain and complain about men, but if they do anything wrong, they just shift the blame to someone else, (i.e. – men), usually by dredging up things that happened sometime around the Hadean era, when the Earth was still cooling. That is really unattractive and something men need to test for during courtship. Men should always ask women for help, always hold them accountable, and always give them responsibilities. See how seriously the woman takes her obligations to other people.
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