By Brittany Rust, Crosswalk.com
Marriage can be a beautiful thing and certainly something to be enjoyed. If you find a godly spouse, indeed, you find a good thing. But no relationship is perfect and sometimes your spouse will say something that gets on your nerves; we’ve all been there if married very long at all!
This one’s for the husbands; a list of things better left unsaid to your wife. It’s not all inclusive and this isn’t to point you out; us wives have some things better left unsaid as well. But in case you’re wondering, here are 10 comments that might bother your wife.
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1. “You should have asked for help.”
A woman wants a husband who will care for her and watch over her. She wants a protector and to feel taken care of. Because of this, it’s nice when our husband notices we might need help with something and jumps in for the support. Sometimes a wife might need help reaching for that bowl above the refrigerator or picking up the cheerios on the floor. This is a great opportunity to jump in and serve your wife.
If you don’t jump in and maybe your wife seems frustrated or mentions she would have like helped, refrain from commenting she should have asked for it. A comment like that will leave her feeling alone and uncared for. I promise you, it’s the little things that go a long way!
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2. “We just don’t agree so let’s not talk about it.”
Sometimes the logic is, if I know we won’t agree on the topic or see eye to eye, let’s not talk about it. But not talking about it doesn’t make the difference go away. If anything, it creates a gap that will only grow with time.
I’ve watched this happen when it comes to politics, family, and even the Bible. Don’t be afraid to talk to your wife regarding a sensitive issue just because you don’t think you’ll agree. Take the opportunity to really listen to each other and grow closer through the differences.
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3. “Why are you doing it that way?”
When we’re working on something we care about or pour a lot of time into, we look to our husband for encouragement and validation.
What you don’t want to do is start critiquing how your wife is going about her project. Avoid making statements that call into question her ability; this will significantly discourage her. It’s ok to compliment and then ask, “have you ever thought of trying this?” This approach encourages her and leads to bettering each other, rather than critiquing.
Related Resource: Listen to our new, FREE podcast on marriage: Team Us. The best marriages have a teamwork mentality. Find practical, realistic ideas for strengthening your marriage. Listen to an episode here, and then head over to LifeAudio.com to check out all of our episodes:
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4. “Looks the same to me.”
Your wife gets a new haircut, works out to lose a few pounds, or tries out a new makeup look. She wants to know you notice and might ask “how do I look” or “can you tell I made a change?” If so, never say anything close to “you look the same to me.”
Your wife wants you to notice her, in both the small and significant ways. Make a comment about how you like the new look or appreciate the hard work she’s put into the new effort.
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5. “What did you do all day?”
This is a big no, no! Some women stay home to take care of the kiddos while the husband goes to work, or perhaps works from home. I beg you to please never come home and ask your wife what she’s been doing all day. Maybe the house isn’t perfect or dinner is a bit late, but I promise you that any woman staying home to care for the family, whether that be with kids or a stay-at-home job, is not bored or sitting around the house all day.
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6. “What did you say?”
If your wife is sharing something with you, please don’t tune her out as you look at your phone or daydream about the upcoming game (or whatever it is men daydream about!). The last thing your wife wants to hear after she has said something is, “what did you say?” This can be incredibly discouraging and deflating.
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7. “I don’t know.”
Your wife is looking for her keys or asking what you’d like for dinner, just to name a few examples. She’s turning to you for some insight or help. When you say “I don’t know” and keep doing what you’re doing, you leave your wife feeling alone.
Instead, jump in and ask how you can help, offer to look with her, or make some suggestions.
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8. “I’ll do it later.”
She asks for some help with the house, or for you to run to the grocery store. You respond with “I’ll do it later” but forget or do it a few days later. Here’s the deal: if you do say it, be the person who does it within a reasonable time that doesn’t leave your wife stressed. Only then, having a track record of getting things done, may you use this phrase. If your history is spotty, it’s time to amp up your timeliness!
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9. “I don’t remember saying that” or “You’re remembering that wrong.”
When remembering some details, both people are going to feel confident in their memory. Be careful how you handle this conversation or it could quickly turn into a fight.
If you feel confident in your memory, try something different like “they way I remember it is…” and approach it from a neutral perspective. Saying something like “you’re remembering it wrong” can feel like an attack and put your wife on the defense.
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10. “It’s up to you.”
You’re trying to come up with a plan or figure out where to eat and your wife asks for your opinion. You then respond, “it’s up to you.” This can be a frustrating remark to hear and make your wife feel alone or bossy.
Engage in conversation with her to find a solution that works for both of you!
Disclaimer: I gathered these in a poll conducted with godly wives. To my wonderful husband, you’ve only said one or two of these [wink, wink]!
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