As poet, T.S. Eliot put it, “Most of the evil in this world is done by people with good intentions.” With that saying in mind, did it ever occur to you that sometimes nice things aren’t that nice to hear especially when we don’t really mean them? Yes you may think it’s nice to say them, but your spouse doesn’t want to hear them daily.
Here are three well-meant remarks that end up wasting relationships:
- The automatic “Yes, dear.” – It’s ok to agree with your partner’s ideas or suggestions but it’s annoying to not have your own voice. You are not expected to nod to everything your partner says because it’s not an act and if you are expected to agree with everything then that is not a relationship. You have to agree to disagree sometimes because it will help you build your relationship as opposed to just “agreeing” yet deep down you are slowly resenting your partner.
- Insincere praise: Are you setting the bar too high, dooming your spouse to a lifetime of trying to match or outdo old triumphs? Or are you setting the bar too low, dooming yourself to a lifetime of pretending to like something you don’t? Telling your hubby he looks really good after shedding a few kilos at the gym is good, however do not focus so much on it, the same way you don’t want him to say “you look so amazing” after shedding weight for baby number two but the compliments disappear once you are stuck with baby fat after baby number three. Truth be told you will be hurt.
- The innocent insult: “I feel like you’re…” – It feels bad to be insulted whether directly or indirectly so there’s really no difference between saying “I feel that you’re being stupid” and calling someone “stupid” . Using “I feel” is just sugarcoating which doesn’t reduce the impact on your partner because they will not take it lightly. Use “I feel” statements appropriately — to talk about your emotions, not to label your spouse as unfair, silly or irresponsible. Instead, address specific issues or problems that bother you, finding fault with actions not your spouse’s character. Remember, while understanding each other is good the only true way to repair hurts is to take action!