Love & Sex Magazine

How To Not Be A Nagging Wife

By Msadams @HilaryFerrell

Procopio Photography 0265 650x433 How To Not Be A Nagging Wife

As Mr. A and I approach our one year wedding anniversary (it’s only a month away—where has the time gone seriously), I’ve been looking back at how our relationship has changed since we said, “I do!”

In a lot of ways, things are exactly the same.  He’s still my soul mate, still my best friend, still the person I look forward to seeing the most.

But in other ways, our relationship has changed a lot.

Take for example my propensity to nag (sorry, it was directly inherited from my Momma).  I’m the kind of person that is constantly trying to accomplish as many things as humanly possible.  I’m always thinking about the next thing that needs to be completed.  My brain hardly ever stops churning.

Mr. A, on the other hand, is much more relaxed about life and deadlines and details.  If he’s interested in something, he’ll inhale it (like the entire first season of Sons of Anarchy that we watched in one day).  But if he hates the task in front of him, he’ll procrastinate to the point of driving me insane.

Admittedly, my coping mechanism for his procrastination of dreaded tasks (like cleaning the apartment) has not been that great over the years.  I will nag the crap out of him until something gets done.  Some days, he takes the nagging in stride, other days he turns it into an all-out brawl, complete with remarks about how he didn’t marry a mother.  You know the usual girl vs. boy thing.

After every nagging fit, I always promise myself that I won’t nag him anymore.  It clearly doesn’t make him move any faster.  In fact, I think it often has the opposite effect.  It doesn’t make me feel like a better wife—despite what all you guys may think women take no joy in harassing their husbands.  It makes us feel smothering mothers too.

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Contrary to popular belief I'm not always ordering people around

This weekend I actually kept to that internal promise for the first time.  And you know what?  It actually worked.

As I mentioned on Tuesday, my Mom came to visit our apartment this weekend.  I reminded Mr. A early in the week that we needed to clean the apartment before she got here on Saturday.  I dutifully cleaned my half throughout the week, while Mr. A did his usual procrastination routine.

Cut to Saturday morning, when he still hadn’t started his cleaning, I resisted the urge to nag and went to the grocery store.  When I got back from the store, he had started cleaning but his time was rapidly running out.  He had a softball game in 20 minutes and he wasn’t anywhere close to being finished.

At some point, he realized it just wasn’t going to happen and he admitted to me that he wouldn’t have time to finish everything before he had to leave.  Previous me would have gone into a lecture about how a reminded him when he needed to be finished and he of course ignored me and waited until the last minute possible…blah blah…

But instead, realizing that nagging and complaining wasn’t going to magically clean our floors, I took a deep breath and said, “I’ll finish up what you haven’t.  What’s left?”

He kind of stopped and paused for a minute, wondering where his nagging wife disappeared to, and told me what needed to be done.

A few minutes later, Mr. A did something I never expected.  He came up to me and said, “You know what, I’ll finish that stuff before I have to leave. It’s not your responsibility.”

I was pretty sure that hell had just frozen over—not nagging my husband actually resulted in him doing what I wanted him to do.  He realized that I was disappointed and frustrated without me saying it and he took it upon himself to make it right.

In an odd way, it made me feel like we were really a married couple.  We both decided to take the mature approach and push our feelings aside for the benefit of the other person.

I can’t nag my husband out of his procrastination, just like he can’t subdue my compulsion to complete everything instantaneously.

Sometimes, it takes the wisdom of marriage to see that the mature reaction to every spousal irritation is to stop, take a breath, and resist the urge to nag.

Do you have trouble not being a nagging wife?

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