Yesterday I linked to one of my bride’s posts from last week, and I said: “Lest anyone think we are perfect (and for the record I was being a bit selfish because I was feeling entitled.)”.
Entitlement is an ugly thing. Entitlement makes us think it’s okay to be rude and selfish, and left unchecked feeling entitled will suck the life out of a marriage.
I could try to excuse my rudeness on the fact I’d had two hours sleep, but the truth is I was feeling my lack of sleep entitled me to something special. Some would argue my lack of sleep did entitle me to something special, but I know that’s a trap. If I start to think my circumstances entitle me to things, I’ll start looking for circumstances I can use to feel entitled. I might even skew my circumstances to feel entitled. If your wife thinks she should cut you some slack because of your circumstances, great; if you think that way, you either have a problem or you’re setting yourself up for a problem.
What, you may ask, if my wife feels entitled? Just as bad, but not as easy for you to change. Sometimes people are tempted to feel entitled because they’re not getting the love, help, or deference they should get. If you’re guilty of any of those, changing those things might help her get past her entitlement. If this is not the case, try to figure out why your wife plays the entitlement card. With a lot of prayer and planning, have a discussion with her. Tell her you fear the entitlement mentality is hurting your marriage, and explain it actually makes it difficult for you to give her what she wants and needs. Be gentle and kind, but be firm.
Bottom line: Please don’t let entitlement destroy the marriage you could have! Be it you, her, or both, do something about it!