This article responds to two ladies’ comments at post 2020.
Pinging off Cinnamon’s initiative, Her Husband’s Wife describes frequent wifely problems in this clear and simple process.
1. Husband trips up and does something wrong.
2. Wife reacts with angry outburst or motherly scolding.
3. Husband either fights or flights from wife. (His behavior worsens).
4. As the husband’s behavior “worsens” the woman tells other women about her husband’s bad behavior.
5. Other women rally on wife’s side against husband and advise wife to not let this go, get in his face, show him who’s boss etc. The wife elevates herself as being better than her husband or remains in “victim” mode to receive sympathy.
6. Husband doesn’t respond well to any of this.
7. A wedge is put between husband and wife.
Review that process and note how two threads weave through it. a) Women are processors and tend to keep things going; inequalities must be addressed and resolved. Men are producers and tend to seek final results. Hence, men go into fight or flight mode easily and fake settlement until the process ends their way.
b) Of course he starts the process by doing something wrong, but that too springs from his nature. His conquest before marriage empowers him with conqueror’s right. She is his. He ‘owns’ her and especially their sexual agenda. It gives him some measure of residual independence that he exemplifies from time to time after marriage. I don’t claim it’s right, equal, or even fair. Only that his heart and mind are hardwired that way from birth. Whatever deviation or special adjustment a man makes comes from being taught greater respect for females and originates before puberty. Or, conqueror’s right is severely weakened by her conquering him for marriage before he conquers her for sex. (But then after marriage it’s easier but not certain for her to lose respect for him—but that’s another story.)
What’s the solution? Cinnamon advised a friend this way: “…whether he was in the wrong is COMPLETELY IRRELEVANT because men don’t like to be berated and criticized by women, and consider it disrespectful when a woman does this, under any circumstance. I told her that her daughter should have ignored the behavior and been cordial to him when he got home but not overly friendly, to pull back just a little bit in order to signal her displeasure but in a subtle way.” It’s a good start on the process of ending a disruption.
Women, being processors, should be able to work the forthcoming recovery fairly easy as it capitalizes on female strengths inherited at birth, For example, patience, soft-heartedness, hard-headedness, future more important than the present, fear of abandonment, ability to find gratefulness in little things, urge to nest even stronger than urge to love someone, and urge to heal others’ wounds. Plus, women have adaptability and survivability skills that make females the superior sex and enable women to naturally generate balance with male dominance.
Now, imagine this. A woman offended immediately ends the process at step 1 above and invokes a new process by and only within herself. He never hears her take exception to his wronging her. Her ordeal ends for him except as his conscience begins to smolder with guilt and regret, which she should neither expect nor be surprised when it emerges. In her mind, she puts him aside as a participant. She works through it all by herself. Now, this process is written for the severest or repeated wrongs. If an offense is less severe, ease off at appropriate places in the process.
- She reminds herself that she’s the relationship expert and he’s an uninterested party only for this process. It’s all up to her and she doesn’t seek advice of girlfriends or family. It’s her ballgame to pitch her way such that husband learns who she is internally rather than what others influence her to become. She aims to settle them into a two-sided mating that depends on no outside influences. (If she must talk to someone, let it be her mirror image, her best friend.)
- Her objective: Let him figure out himself what, how, when, where, and even if he wants to please her. When it’s his idea and he repeats pleasing her many times to correct his wrong, it becomes habitual, which makes him uncomfortable at displeasing her. That is what it takes for him to NOT “trip up and do something wrong” in the future.
- She keeps to herself disappointment in him. She stops all bossing. She stops all criticizing him as she did previously. In all matters dealing with him, she uses indirectness, seed planting, hints, and other signs that she regards him in a different light. He reads her that he’s respected less and has to earn her favor even in things disconnected from his offense. However, he’s guilty of nothing but his original offense. She never acknowledges or confirms lack of respect of him as her husband, home CEO, dependable provider/protector, or any other role he fills satisfactorily.
- She tries to forgive him without ever muttering a word about it to him. Forgiveness is more for her than for him. When she finally does forgive him, she doesn’t tell him until he works his way back into her good graces over an extended period of time.
- He knows that he’s disappointed her. As she keeps her thoughts to herself, she earns his respect. It’s not too unlike earning his respect by keeping her legs crossed during dating and courtship.
- If he wants to talk, explain himself, or confess, she listens but says nothing except “Okay” or “I accept what you say.” Let him talk his way into expressing regret, asking forgiveness, and making promises as he sees fit and on his own time and opportunity. He’s the home CEO. He’s the leader. Let him lead. Make it his show, let him express his regrets all alone without her offering criticism, condemnation, judgment, or even encouragement. If he doesn’t earn her forgiveness with more than a few words and subsequent actions over an extended time, he will not appreciate her gift of forgiveness. If she forgives easily, he doesn’t appreciate it fully but learns what works the next time he needs to seek it. So, this process of hers should last for many months and perhaps years.
- Of course the question comes up about sex. If he didn’t cheat, his offense should have no effect on their sexual behavior. If he did, it’s another question addressed in the blog. On the CONTENT page at blog top, search for “cheat.”
By her invoking that recovery process, she sets him aside to live with his heart and mind to open and accumulate regrets. Without inputs from her about his doing her wrong, his curiosity stirs his imagination and his conscience. Only out of that mix do regrets compound into behavioral changes.