Photo courtesy New Discoveries
As we begin the Woman Up series allow me to introduce myself. I’m Pam, Corey’s wife, and am excited to walk with him in the journey of discovering a more passionate yet simple marriage. Being 15 years through the journey, we’ve had our share of bumps and both of us have realized situations in which we needed to step up to the plate, take responsibility, or carry the team if needed.
Somewhere along the way, we had to grow up- woman up- man up. Thus, the series.
Ever get caught up with the girls, whether at lunch in the office or a play date with the other moms, and the topic turns toward your marriage or your husband? Are they typically glowing compliment fests about how smart, brave, handsome and loving he is? Do you talk about all the things that are going well in your marriage?
My guess is that the conversation more typically turns negative. He got home late; he doesn’t help around the house; he can;t take care if the kids. Was anything improved by the time you spent tearing your husband or your marriage down? Communication? Parenting skills? Understanding each other? Sex?
Actually, those things may have just gotten worse because those negative thoughts are getting even more engrained in your head. Hopefully, the kids weren’t around to hear the message that it’s OK to talk negatively about dad to others.
While we do need allies and time to “vent” is warranted in the appropriate setting, watch yourself. Stick to the facts. Don’t get on a roll just because it feels good in the moment. No husband would enjoy being discussed in this manner. Doing so paints him into a good for nothing dope rather than someone to be respected.
The tongue can be our enemy, but let’s harness the dragon ladies and make it our ally. Let’s woman up by lifting our husbands and our marriages up.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Every day encourage/compliment your husband. Both to him and to someone else about him. Don’t tear him down. Last week I was sent a link for a 30-day challenge for wives to do just this. Even if talking negatively about your spouse is not an issue for you, be intentional about encouraging him. Going the extra mile to lift him up can take your marriage an extra 2 miles.
- Break the routine. If negative talk is a problem for you, change things up. If your most tempting time to tear down is at lunch with your girlfriends, skip lunch for a while. Or, have your friends join you in the challenge to encourage their husbands daily. If they don’t want to join, but want to continue negative talk, you may not need to be around them anyway. Who really wants to be around that kind of negative energy?
- Get your mom out of the loop. My mother has been a tremendous sounding board for me throughout my marriage and my life. Sometimes however, this could be a detriment. The mother-in-law/husband relationship is already filled with possible hurdles and difficulties. When conversations with mom turn negative towards husband, it could add fuel to the fire. Family can be a good support, just don’t abuse it.
- Talk to your husband when there are issues to be addressed. There is no reason for everyone else to know about a problem before your husband. The best thing you can do to love and respect him is to share your thoughts. Don’t expect him to change just because you told him you didn’t like something; Woman up and realize that you can’t have everything your way. A grown-up marriage requires both members to speak up and work out the differences together.