We all have those moments that every married couple experiences whether they admit it or not- the moment when you can not STAND your better half’s actions. You don’t hate them but, darn it, at that moment you can’t, for the life of you, think straight to say anything good about them. Let me give you an example that a lot of wives will understand. You get up late at night to use the restroom and as you reach to sit down, you fall in the toilet because your spouse forgot to close the toilet seat! Having angry thoughts coupled with a wet behind, you angrily curse your spouse (hopefully in your head) and go to bed wishing for an attitude adjustment.
Men, I’m sure all of you can understand this example: You’ve just sat down to watch the SEC Championship with your friends. You suddenly get a phone call from your frantic wife who ran out of gas- after you’ve repeatedly told her to fill up her tank. You grudgingly go to meet her (with gas) and by the time you get back to watching the game, it’s half time. Yes, you love her to pieces, but you are ‘mad as hell’ at her. These emotions are what really happens in marriages.
Sometimes you’re mad about trivial issues (like above) but sometimes the issues are much bigger such as infidelity, emotional abandonment etc. Maybe you’re still mad about your spouse for committing infidelity or for not being there emotionally for you. You’ve attended counseling and vowed to make things better, but you can’t shake this feeling.
Being mad is a natural emotion, but how you deal with it is a good indicator on the longevity of your marriage. So how do I ‘get over’ my emotions in order to still be a good partner in my marriage? Do I just forget about what happened like nothing ever happened? Or do I confront the problem head on? It depends on the circumstances, but here are four steps I use to deal with those moments when I just can’t stand my spouse!
1. Pray hard. I use this often- in my life in general. However, those moments when I’m seriously MAD at my spouse, I take a moment and just pray. I pray for understanding, patience and for restraint. Most times I go to a quiet space and just pray until I feel better. Sometimes I pray for 5 minutes, while other times I’m praying for an hour- whatever it takes to make me feel better about the situation.
2. Forgive often. Our spouses are human and many times, while we may be mad at them, they honestly have NO CLUE of why we’re mad. The night that I feel in the toilet, my husband was fast asleep. He had no clue why I got back in the bed angry-after having to take another shower at 3 AM So despite him interrupting an uneventful night, I had to forgive him. That’s part of being married, forgiving one another-even if you sometimes don’t want to.
3. Vocalize why you’re angry. Being angry and not saying why you’re mad is as productive as spanking a child without telling them why they’re being spanked. So whenever you’re calm enough to discuss your feelings with your spouse, be honest but be mindful of their feelings.
4. Forget about it. Yep, if you’ve followed steps 1-3 then all you have left to do is forget about it. That’s the true measure if you love your spouse. Love holds no record.
There will be people who will never admit to having times where they can’t ‘stand’ their spouse. They’ll swear that this article has nothing to do with them. But being married, there will be days you just can’t stand what your spouse does. It’s normal, now get over it. In the end, I married for life. So I make sure that the days where I’m in a ‘funk’ are fewer than the days that I’m happy.
Now my BMWK family, what do you do when you just can’t ‘stand’ your spouse?