"My Husband annoys me. I can't get him to change some bad habits that he has. What should I do?"
Thank you for your question. The first thing to look at is your own judgment and resentment. When we are resentful, we can be irritated by just about anything.
Next time you are upset or resentful, notice how sensitive you become. Just about anything--from a slow moving line, to someone's scraping a chair on the floor--makes you irritable.
If you are like most wives, you have been judging men for a long time. Men are very judgeable and imperfect. At first, men's failings challenge you to try to change them. Their failings gave you a sense of superiority over them. But soon judgment turns to condemnation, resentment, grudges and bitter memories.
Worse yet, your judgment and secret resentment (which you call "hurt feelings") begin to change your beautiful nature into an ugly nagging and dominating one.
Observing these changes in yourself makes you resent your husband even more, since you blame him.
The bottom line is this: learn to observe your husband without judging him. See his failings, but don't hate him for them. Give him some space to be himself. Chances are you are ever critiquing, nagging, and wanting something from him. You pressure makes it hard for him to function.
It is just possible that there may be a real man in there somewhere. But your pressure disables him from functioning, leaving him angry and perhaps uncommunicative most of the time.
A man has to find himself. You cannot make him into one. Of course, it is also possible that there is no good in him. It is possible that he may be just selfish. But you don't know for sure. Right now your judgment and resentment block you from seeing him as he really is.
We are told to be patient with others. Strange, isn't it, that we can be patient with strangers or coworkers, but find it impossible to be patient with those closest to us. If you can't forgive and be patient with those nearest you, then something is wrong.
Patience does not mean resignation, or acceptance with seething resentment. Patience means giving a person a chance. It means looking for the good in another. It means loving what is good in a man. And for men, it means loving what is good in the woman.
Of course, he is wrong too. His weakness, his animalness, his violence on the one hand or his wimpiness on the other hand tempted you and brought the worst out of you. Basically, when things go wrong it is the man's fault. He is supposed to be noble, honorable, principled, virtuous, brave, longsuffering, and full of wisdom and patience.
Alas, your husband failed (as all Adams have failed their Eves). The secret to your recovery is in learning not to resent him. It matters not whether he ever becomes the real man you have needed or not. By not resenting him, you will free your soul to receive the love of God. As long as you resent and judge another, you block God's love from flooding your being.
"All couples argue," says Dr. Roland Trujillo PhD in a recent radio interview.
"All couples argue. Because you have two different people with different needs and different opinions, arguing is inevitable.
In fact (and this is controversial) men and women live in different worlds. So again, disagreements are to be expected.
So why is it that when we watch a debate on television, we enjoy it, but at home debates deteriorate into arguments and get ugly? What is the difference?
Here is the difference
1. In a debate we don't take it personally. At home, our ego gets involved.
2. Resentment. At the office or in a debate, we can be objective about things. At home we become resentful. I talk about this in my book and in a popular article I wrote entitled "What is the Number One Cause of Divorce."
3. No one has taught us the right way to argue. If a couple argues about what is right instead of who is right--and what is right wins--it is a win-win for both.
4. And this is important--we need to understand the difference between men and women.
And there is a difference. Vive la difference! as the French say. In my book I tell the story of men and women, all the way back to paradise lost in the Garden of Eden.
I talk about how misunderstanding each other's true needs leads to confusion and feeling empty."
"Don't worry," says Roland. "It is possible to disagree without being disagreeable. In fact, if we can learn to love each other instead of resenting each other, we might even be able to live happily ever after. "
Roland Trujillo has a PhD in Pastoral Psychology and is the author of 11 books. He is host of a radio advice program that has aired in California and around eh country for 21 years.
His new 315 page book The Myths and Mysteries of Marriage--Making Relationships Work is available in quality paperback at Amazon.com and in in eBook at Scribd.com to download to your mobile device or computer.
Click here to preview and look inside.