6 Things Marriage Counselors Don’t Say To Their Husbands

You’ve only got four hours of sleep, you’re completely out of your mind at work, and when you finally get home from your longest day ever, you trip over the shoes your spouse left in the hallway. (those shoes you’ve been nagging about all week.) Resist the urge to fly out during these, uh, glorious moments of being the only one with you. Chanel dokun, a New York city-based certified life coach trained in marriage and family therapy, has been through it all. She is married with a young son and knows that it is not always easy to focus on the big picture when there is pressure. Here are six things she would never say to her husband, no matter how stressful life is.

1. You never do the dishes.

“The secret to getting your spouse to do what you want is to avoid saying ‘always’ or ‘never’ . These words feel general and dismissive of any effort by the other party. Instead, use my favorite word: more. For example, “I hope you can help with the dishes more often.”. It gives your partner the benefit of the doubt and it also clearly expresses the behaviour you want to see.”

2. You’re lazy.

“My husband leaves his work clothes at the front door as soon as he gets home from work. It was driving me crazy to see the pile of discarded shoes and dress shirts in the living room. Although I have asked him to pick up his dirty clothes 1,000 times, I am careful not to attribute his habits to character flaws. When we make negative judgments about our partner’s character, beyond a momentary mistake, we enter the danger zone of contempt.

3. This is all your fault.

“When times get tough or when we feel wronged, it’s easy to want to pass the buck. But when we take responsibility for any part (large or small) of our personal problems, the healing begins. (for example, you’re late, causing him to be in a hurry, and then forget his concert tickets.) When we don’t want to admit that the other person isn’t entirely responsible for the conflict, we stall the reconciliation.”

4. Maybe we should get a divorce.

“Marriage can be challenging, and sometimes it feels more like work than pleasure. But no matter how hard it was, I was careful not to mention the D word. On the day we said’ I do’ , we promised each other that we would go through every storm together. Throwing out the word“Divorce” creates cracks in the security of our marriage. My husband needs to know that even if things don’t go his way, I will still choose him and we will fight for our future together.”

5. Well, you’re stupid to feel that way.

“The greatest gift we can give another person is the gift of empathy. This is when we jump out of our own selfish reactions or needs, trying to understand what might cause others to feel. I never wanted my husband’s emotions to be denied. Even if I don’t agree with his feelings, I try to respect his ideas and turn my frustration into curiosity about how I can stay on the“US” team.

6. I make more money, so my career is more important.

“Personal value is not tied to occupation or income. It’s easy to feel that the person who brings home the biggest paycheck is the one who has the most impact. However, there are many ways to contribute to a family. My husband and I know that each of us has a unique purpose and a specific line. We respect the contribution that both of us make to our way of life, and we invest in our individual aspirations together, regardless of each other’s monetary returns. In this way, we are each other’s assets, not rivals or competitors, in achieving our life goals.

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