Do we treat our husbands as well as our friends?

Sometimes we wives and moms can be having a hard day, and are perhaps very tired or stressed, but when a friend calls we perk up and feel much better. And when a friend is in need emotionally, we find the time and strength to be present to them, offering a listening ear, encouraging words, and understanding heart…We are able to give the best of ourselves to friends, even when we are drained.

We wouldn’t imagine saying, “I’ve had a rough day, so I’m going to blast a heap of bitterness into the first available ear, even if it’s my dear friend.” Or “I think I’ll sting my friend with repeated sarcasm if she attempts to make me feel better. What does she know?”

Why then, do we women often do exactly that with our husband, as if our every struggle was his personal fault? As if he should cower under our mood, and be culpable if he doesn’t read our mind and fan us with palm branches before we mention being hot…

We’ve been taught to be very self-righteous as women, and very suspicious of men, but I ask you, is this prickly attitude making us happy? Does it not foster division in our marriages, and dissatisfaction in ourselves?

I grew up with three brothers, whom I love a lot, so I have a hard time buying the “evil men” stereotype. Personally I think we human beings are all fairly imperfect, but still kind of wonderful.

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Ultimately we are the ones who have to make ourselves happy, who with the help of grace have to choose happiness despite life’s challenges. Blaming someone else for all our troubles only traps us in the cage of our own weakness. We wouldn’t blame all our challenges on our friends, so why would we choose (even subconsciously) to blame them on our husbands, who are supposed to be our best friends?

The role of a best friend is to love us no matter what and to walk with us through life, always by our side. It isn’t to carry us so we don’t even have to use our legs. It’s to support us in happy and sad times, but not to provide a godlike dose of happiness and protection from all sadness. You can be vulnerable and honest with your husband without expecting him to be able to fix everything. Don’t deify your spouse. Accept and love him as a human being who is worthy of your respect and tenderness, even if he’s not a superhero. Remember inside there is still a little boy who needs your love.

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Perhaps you and I are never grumpy or sarcastic with our spouses (ahem!), but for those mortals who are, I think this is good advice: try to treat your husband with the same kindness and understanding you do your friends. And of course all this advice applies to men as well, in how lovingly they should treat their wives.

This year let’s take responsibility for our happiness by trying to be our best selves, not just with our friends, but with our spouse. In doing so we will become better people, and give him a chance to do the same. And it is in this striving to become the best version of ourselves that we will find peace and happiness.

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9 thoughts on “Do we treat our husbands as well as our friends?

  1. Last week, I binge-read your blog, but didn’t get a chance to comment (too overwhelmed with all the great posts!). I tuned in today to fix that problem, and I find you’ve written ANOTHER great post. I love this and I need to be constantly reminded of the fact. I also think we need to “talk up” our husbands in their absence, rather than joining in the husband-bashing sessions that seem par for the course at school gate conversations. This post was good for me!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, that’s so true…the hen-pecking we take part in as women is not so nice, and really not fair to the men we love, who work so hard to support and love us back. We’d be so choked if they gossiped half as much about us!
      Thank you for you lovely compliments also…it’s quite fun for my writing to be considered yummy enough to binge on! 😉 And I also agree that “comments as like Christmas” as you say on your blog!
      Anna 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I dig deep for my friends and present my best self, even when I’m tired. I need to remember to do this for my husband as well. It’s so easy to be lazy and take each other for granted.

    I know I’ve already commented, but re-reading this post brought out different things!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Love these ideas! I’m on a marriage and family workshop right now and this Pre-Cana course was recommended as a very helpful resource. I’m so glad to see the results! I think it’s fairly easy to to run as once you sign up you receive en email everything month with video links and articles for discussion. Plus sounds like a fun way to make other supportive couple friends, so you can encourage each other to keep the romance alive. Thanks for sharing this great article, Kate!

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      2. I went to a Teams of Our Lady meeting last night (we meet once a month at each others’ homes with a small group of other couples) and our discussion topic touched on some of these issues. I talked about the ideas in this article as well as your own most excellent post!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That’s awesome! What a great thing to meet and discuss these important things about marriage, and I’m so tickled that you mentioned my post! 🙂 🙂
        I told my friends here that you are due soon and they are praying for your delivery! How big our world wide Catholic family is…

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