Try to bury her mistake, or deal with it?

August 4, 2009

in Beyond the Marriage

© Pixelbrat | Dreamstime.comMore 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.


1 comments
prov9_18_19
prov9_18_19

I struggle with this more privately than in public. If she does something for me that she thinks will mean a lot, but really isn't what I wanted done. I struggle with balancing my gratitude for the gift of the act of service (which is one of my main love languages), with letting her know that her efforts could be better spent next time. Reading that, I look like a real clod. But I think about the "8 is enough" reunion movie where the dad had to explain to his daughter that he didn't really like peanut butter and sardine sandwiches. He'd been eating them the last dozen years or so, because she made them with love and he didn't want to disappoint her. But, when she finally found out, she felt bad, because she really thought that she had been giving him a huge treat all these years. I don't know. It's just something I struggle with. I don't want to disappoint her. But I don't want her to be disappointed later and I don't want to eat peanut butter and sardine sandwiches for a dozen years or more. I'd rather her expressions of love be something we both can really celebrate, rather than one of us putting up with it.

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