When I posted a quote about not talking bad about your husband on my Facebook page yesterday I was surprised at the response I got!
The quote said, “Don’t talk bad about your husband to anyone. Ever.” It reminds me of the great advice I heard from my college pastor’s wife the fall before I got married. In one of the Sunday school classes that she was teaching she told us that in her 20 plus years of marriage she had NEVER spoken badly about her husband to her mother.
I was a newly engaged girl when I heard that and I loved that advice. I knew that I wouldn’t ever talk bad about my man to my mother or anyone else for that matter because frankly, there wasn’t a single bad thing to say about him!
Fast forward to 2 years of marriage, throw in a fussy newborn, add some debt – and suddenly my perfect man didn’t seem so perfect anymore. The amazing, God-centered marriage I’d dreamed about wasn’t all that dreamy anymore, and the only thing I knew to do was talk about it. I added a bit of prayer in there too, but it was so much more satisfying to talk and get sympathy.
So talk I did. Sure, I was trying to come up with ways to make things better, but I was also talking to get affirmation. I wanted someone to tell me that I was right and he was wrong. Over the next 7 or so years I talked and complained to a lot of people. And, you guessed it – one of the main people I grumbled to was my mom.
My mom was easy to talk to and, of course, she was on my side. The rest of my family was on my side too – so it was only natural to complain to them about my husband.
For me the venting was cathartic, but what I didn’t expect was how painful all the complaints were to my family. Over time, their relationship to my husband started to erode. Whenever they saw him at family events all they could think about was all the bad things I said. It’s only natural. Soon, my family was pulling away from my husband so much that he noticed and even decided he might not want to visit much anymore.
That wasn’t the results I expected. When we complain about our husbands – men who will be hanging out with our families until death do us part – we do much more harm than good. I wish I would have learned that sooner.
My college pastor’s wife had a good thing going. Unless there is some abuse or other danger going on in your marriage, make it a habit to NOT talk bad about your husband to your family.
Often in marriage you do need to get advice or just talk to someone. When you do though, make it a counselor, pastor or a friend who won’t just sympathize with you but work to help you restore your marriage.
Do you agree?