More or less following up on my Monday tip – are you ever too protective of your bride, or she of you? Maybe protective is not the right word, because what I am thinking of is more like being unwilling to admit to others that she has made a mistake – saying silly, ridiculous and even untrue things to try and “support” her when she did something wrong or said something that does not hold up.
This is a tough issue, with most of us tending to one of two errors – either publicly blasting our spouse, or looking stupid for not admitting with what everyone else clearly sees. What I am suggesting is not about blame or jumping on her, but rather about being realistic when she is less than perfect. The reality is you can often make something go away better by acknowledging it than trying to deny it.
Maybe a non-marriage example will help. The other day I had to call a company, for the second time, about a rewards program I still can’t access on-line. The representative I spoke to was honest about the first representative’s failure – identifying what should have been done without blaming or running down the first representative. I received an apology, a clear statement on what was being done to fix it, when I should expect it to be resolved, what to do if it was still not resolved at that time, and I was told I was receiving a monetary credit for my trouble. When I placed the call, I was frustrated with the company, when I hung up I was impressed with the company. Why can’t you do the same for your bride? Talk with someone who is rightly (or somewhat rightly) frustrated with her, and leave them feeling good about the two of you as a couple.
The goal is to cover each other’s errors or failing with honestly, and a real effort to make any amends. Acknowledging the fault is critical for this to work well, and that means being able to admit your bride is not perfect – or her being free to admit the same about you. The possible catch to this is both you and your bride being okay with lovingly and honestly admitting each other’s errors to others. If either of you feels betrayed or unloved by this honesty, it’s is not going to work.