18/10/2012

What Do Wives Expect?

Posted in Family, General, Musings, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 5:18 pm by The Water Bearer

As I drove to work yesterday I was listening to breakfast radio, and the female announcer brought up a complaint made by a wife who she had been in discussion with.

The wife was a stay at home mum and her husband worked 10 hours a day to provide for them. Her complaint was that he should help out more at home and not gripe when she gives him jobs. She was adamant that her husband should do more, such as cleaning the shower and toilet, help with cooking and take some responsibility for bathing, dressing and attending to the children etc when he was home.

The male announcer explained the husbands response, which was basically “I have just worked 10 hours and walk in the front door to hear these words or similar come from her mouth. “”Good you’re home, now you can help me with these kids. Can you run them a bath and take the baby for a while?”” I just walked in the door from a long hard day, I want to sit down for 5 minutes and relax with a beer. I don’t think that is too much to ask!”

The female announcer replied “She is obviously unhappy, if he can do more to help her be happier in their relationship, shouldn’t he just do it!”

I saw red! This is one of the most infuriating stances that many women let their inner enemies convince them to take. They may as well be saying “I am going to keep complaining about how unhappy I am until I make the whole house unhappy, so you will have no choice but to bow to my every request’.

Now let me clarify, this wife didn’t work, and her children were in childcare 3 days per week, and she claimed that she never stops, that she never gets a break. Even if they were at home all day every day, pouncing on her husband the second he walks in the door is selfish, ungrateful and unloving. I know because I used to be like this. I was all these things and worse.

One thing I learned some years ago is that miserable complaining only breeds more misery. I know plenty of husbands who have done their best to meet every ridiculous, demanding request of their wives, only to discover they could never reach the light at the end of the list, nor help her find peace and happiness.

“It is better to live in a corner of a roof, than in a house shared with a contentious woman.” Prov 21:9 (ASV)

These relationships fell apart leaving a trail of bitter destruction, and setting the worst kind of example for their children’s future relationships.

I grew up in a home with a single Mum who had to work 45-50 hour weeks to provide for us. She had the responsibility of raising three children, with no family close enough to help her. My younger sibling was only 18months old when Mum became single. Through sheer will and determination she did it all. I watched her struggle to cope, I heard constantly how stressful her life was. As a child I can remember the countless times she would pour tears over her finances, often sharing that burden with us children. She missed out on doing the school run and hearing about our day or our thoughts as we drove to and fro. She was unable to keep watch over us after school to make sure we stayed on track. She had no time to learn new recipes or practice creativity in the kitchen, she just fed us. She had no opportunity to load some of the weight onto someone else just because she was tired. She had no one to share some of the burden at the end of a long day. She just did it, all, on her own.

As a wife and mother I am so very, extremely grateful that I have a man who is willing to work long days to provide for us. I do my utmost to put aside my days complaints and greet him after work with a cold beer, a warm smile and a kiss. As a result he is more likely to: a) Come home! b) Help me, and c) Rush to my aid like the knight in shining armour I always dreamed of.

If we give compliments and praise in recognition of all the things, small or large, that they do for us, they will be more willing to help out when we are unwell or warn thin from a tough day, or if we come across a challenge we need their help with. We need to build them up, not tear them down! We need to recognise that our contentious attitude is causing more problems, and make attempts to change it. We need to call on our inner angels to help us see all the things we are grateful for, and refuse to let disappointment from unmet expectations breed bitterness and misery.

On a final note, (this is an area that I am currently trying to make more changes to myself), we take so much responsibility away from our men due to our controlling, often insecure natures. Even if they do try to help, often we are there pointing out how they ‘should’ be doing it, or criticising them afterward because it wasn’t done the way we do it. When we ask their opinion regarding a decision, we reply with our reasons to disagree. We say we want them to take some of our load, but when they try we yank it back out of their hands.

I wonder how many women would tolerate being told that everything we try to do is not done properly, or if every decision we made was overturned and debated?

Trusting our husbands to be capable, and giving their decisions a chance to succeed before we catastrophise them into oblivion, will help boost their self worth, and their sense of masculinity. That way they will have the opportunity to dazzle us with their skills and leadership, and we in turn can relax in grateful appreciation of how lucky we are to have them.

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15 Comments »

  1. Brilliant…

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  2. I’m so blessed to have a husband who has no complaints ironing his clothes when I don’t want to wake up early in the morning to do it for him!

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    • Yes you are, be sure you tell him why everyday 😉 It has been a very long time since my hubby needed his clothes ironed (Amen!) I remember dragging the ironing board out in front of the television each week and ironing everything in one go because that was much more therapeutic than having to do a bit each day. I always put it off but I recall it relaxing and soothing me as I watched the iron glide over the wrinkles leaving nothing in it’s wake. Oops went off on a tangent there 😉 Anyway, thanks for reading. Blessings to you!

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  3. Ohhh I love this one. It’s something I need to be reminded of often.
    Every day my husband comes home and gives us hugs and kisses, and then he goes outside with a beer and a book or his phone to relax for 20-30minutes, however long he needs to destress from work. I don’t interrupt him from that time. He deserves it. However, he and I both can be critical of each other at times in regards to telling each other how we should be doing things. He tells me how to drive (ahhh!!) and how to cook, and I tell him how to pick up after himself. We both tell each other how to parent, because he have different upbringings and ideals. We do always try to come to a compromise, but we do need to ease up on the nagging of each other! Well said, and I totally agree and can relate! A little kindness goes a long way!

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    • So true, thank you for sharing that. It is so easy to be critical of others. Our inner enemies are strong at pointing out imperfections in others and making them seem important, and also helping us think our way is the best and only right way. So many different ways of doing things are equally ‘right’ or equally effective yet our enemies can put the blinkers on us so we can’t see that, and then were aren’t even willing to give them a try. Praying we all find ways to be less critical and more lovingly trusting. Amen! 😉

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  4. I’m single so I can say I agree with you. 🙂 Good post and good choice of verses!

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  5. I agree with you, I was a stay at home mom with an at home business and worked extra hard to make sure all was in order when my husband arrived home. I had no idea what his day had been like nor he mine. I just gave him a few moment to settle in and breathe and then we both would work together to make a nice evening for the family. We also would plan ahead when either of us would have extra demands outside of home to help each other out. Couples need to work on what works for both of them, not just what works for one. Great post 🙂

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    • Thanks for your comment Tina. Good for you being able to apply equal respect between you and your Hubby. It makes for a much happier existence for the whole household. Blessings to you!

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  6. GodGirl said,

    I love the intelligence and wisdom with which you write about life issues. And I totally agree – such demands of our husband can become like a vortex, with no escape (for either of us)… until we start realising that our happiness and contentment with our ‘lot in life’ is our responsibility. Yes we need to ask for help with the kids sometimes (I’d go insane if I didn’t) but if we’re not feeding love, understanding and respect into the lives of our husbands, no one’s happy, as you say.
    I’ve been there too, but only recently realised I need to lay off my husband, be direct about what I need, but also give him time out and honour for what he does for us. He works hard too, and deserves respect as much as I do.

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    • Yes Amen God Girl! We are all a work in progress and I think it is so important to be open to changing ourselves rather than trying to control and manipulate those around us. It comforts me to know that there are other women out there taking responsibility for their own sense of happiness and not assuming it is someones elses job to meet their every expectation and spend each minute only to ‘please’ them. Thanks for your encouraging comment. Blessings to you!

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  7. reneeboomer said,

    LOVE this post! YOU are so brilliant! I treat my Hubby like a “King” and I tell you it all comes back to me, “ten-fold”. My Hubby treats me with total respect, kindness and just adores me. We are both so blessed. Yes, he does help me at home and if he doesn’t I don’t worry about it. He does tons more outdoors than I do and I am retired. He is still working full time and when he walks in the door and says, “Hi gorgeous. How is the love of my life?” It touches my heart!! 🙂

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    • Yes Sweet Renee!! I know exactly what you mean. It hurts me to hear men being dismissed by their ungrateful wives, and if only they knew that if they treat him right he will return the favour ‘ten fold’ as you say. I am so glad we met. Thanks for your encouragement and kindred heart. It is a true blessing! 🙂

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      • reneeboomer said,

        God does work in mysterious ways. Yes, he put us in the same path………. I find in the world today there is so much disrespect amongst couples. It is so sad! MY hubby and I treasure what we share and love to spend time together. I am happy to have met you as well. 🙂

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