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Old 07-16-2011, 09:18 AM
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sagency sagency is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: U.S. Pacific Northwest
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K (my wife) and I have a few rules we agree to that help relationship life in general. One of those rules is:
No blowing up unless you've already articulated--in your out loud voice--what it is that is upsetting you.

In your story, you see the lack of a text as uncaring. Hubby and girl come home to find a fuming wife. To you, they're happy-go-lucky. To them, they walked into an explosion.

You see, they might not have processed how important their timeliness or a text is to you. Yes, one could argue this is common courtesy, but people need reminders and they need to know boundaries. If you haven't articulated the things that you need--arrival by X time or some sort of check in by Y time--then their expectation and your expectations might not match. If I were coming home and found a wife upset at being late, one of the things I'd wonder is, "If you were worried, why didn't you check on me?" So a lack of clear guidelines means confusion in all sorts of directions and no real accountability.

Instead, articulate the issue, state a suggested remedy, and get the people involved to acknowledge the plan going forward.

"Hey, I get worried about you guys, and I don't feel important if you're more than 30 minutes late and I don't get contact. In the future, I'd like you to call or text if you're going to be that late, ok?"

If they agree and don't follow through, then you can blow up all you want (and you get to add the "you know better!" nag). But I've found that using this technique means we have minimal blowups but are able to be mindful of each other's needs. Many times if I screw something up, chances are I just had no idea and had I known, I would have tried to do it right the first time.
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