One Simple Tip for a Happy Marriage

By Kathy NickersonFebruary 17th, 2018mercy1 Comment

A few months ago, my husband made a comment at breakfast, and I immediately felt hurt. Belittled. Misunderstood. I pouted for a good while, if you must know. I also wondered how on earth he could say such a thing. The comment festered, and I started adding up other remarks he had made here and there. I soon had a good case for why I thought my husband didn’t like me anymore. He was stuck with me, but he wasn’t happy about it.

Eventually, of course, these thoughts came out of my mouth.

My ever-patient husband, Wendell, turned to me with a bewildered gaze. “What are you talking about?”

“That thing you just said,” I told him. “It hurt my feelings.”

“What thing I just said?”

We then spent fifteen minutes hashing out the he-said-she-saids of our one-sided argument. Eventually, he convinced me I had misinterpreted his meaning. (I would tell you what he said, but, of course, I can’t even remember the subject, let alone the comment.) When we finally reached safe ground, Wendell gave me this profound moment:

“Why would we not believe the best about each other?” he said. “We try to always believe the best about other people, why not one another?”

He had me.

I’m not sure why it took me all these years to apply the concept to our marriage. Once I did, all kinds of things got better.

Now, if he is quiet during the evening, I don’t assume he is mad at me over something. I assume he is pondering deep truths. Or, that it really is a fact men can sit and think about nothing. (Hard to imagine, but they all claim it is true.)

If I ask a question, and he answers in a less-than-enthusiastic voice, I don’t assume my question was stupid. I assume the poor guy has a cold. Or just woke up. Or has lost his voice from answering other people’s questions all day long.

If I ask what he wants for supper, and he says, “Anything is fine,” I don’t assume he wants to put all the weight of our nutrition and survival on my shoulders. I assume he Does Not Care what we eat for supper, and he will be happy to open a can of cold beans. (Seriously. I’ve seen him do this.)

So, Dear Reader, I dare you to try this tip. Believe the best about your spouse in every possible situation. (Don’t be an idiot and overlook things like lipstick on his collar or Vicodin without a prescription. Those things are another story.) I’m talking about the little everyday irritations where we build a case against one another instead of joining hands and standing on the same side.

Let’s all start believing the best and see what happens. We might change the world.

  1. Chelsea says:

    Amen and amen!❤️

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