While at a friend’s house awhile back the mother was sharing with me how her son and her were raising a butterfly. Her excitement was obvious. Her husband stepped over and tried to make a pun by saying, “Wow, you must really be bored for that to be such a thrill.” Her immediate retort was, “That is not a very nice thing to say to a hard working mom.” There was no eye contact, just a strong sense of “you offend me and I’m not going to take it.” As the third party in this scenario it was clear to me that this husband had not wanted to hurt his wife. Granted he didn’t use great tact, but his goal was to join in with some light hearted teasing. All that was lost because his wife became offended while assuming he was belittling her.
The “belittling” my friend felt from her husband is one of the most common offenses at our house too. The funny thing is, 99% of the time my husband has no clue why I have become ice woman. He had no malice intended and is standing there wondering what just transpired. When I try to explain, he will often tell me he had no negative intentions and encourages me to laugh at myself (which at the time, goes over like a lead balloon). Objectively though, I have to agree with him. When I see other wives respond to their husband’s “teasing” with a laugh or even by adding a detail of their own, they are so much more attractive than the wife that glares and stiffens her back in utter disgust.
Looks like I have two options: believe the best or be offended, which will I choose?
More from this article tomorrow.