My husband calls it nagging, I call it motivational speaking – Unknown
To all dear husbands, here is a heartfelt address to you. Help your wives understand what nagging looks like to you. Hear their perspective on what is not nagging.
We wonder whether we are all mistaken about what nagging means. Do we annoy the living hell out of you or have you just misunderstood what we say and how we say it?
You see, we understand that nagging is an annoying trait. We understand its meaning, to criticize or complain often in an annoying way, especially in order to try and force someone to do something. This meaning we got to learn from the Cambridge dictionary. We know that nagging is not attractive. Who desires to have someone repeat a matter over and over in an annoying manner? We would not want someone talking to us in such a way. Criticism degrades if it serves no other purpose other than challenge negatively rather than enlighten.
But who is a nag? Is it a woman who asks her husband to act on something more than once? How many times can we say something to make it to the nagging level? Tell us for we desire to understand this matter better and avoid any form of nagging.
We understand that wives have been accused of being nagging more than their husbands, but we also know there are husbands who can nag. Dear husband, do men stereotype women in this regard? We find it interesting though that when a wife raises a matter more than once, it is considered nagging whereas if the husband does the same, it is considered a request repeated that is worthy of submission. When you think of us as nags, do you do so justifiably? Or are you running away from dealing with a particular issue that we would like addressed? Would you rather we do not deal with the hard matters we face? Or are we just seeing this matter differently?
Believe this, we are working hard to avoid being the nagging and quarrlesome type described in the Bible because the picture painted of this woman is not good. After all, he who finds a wife finds a good thing and we believe that you found a good thing when you found us.
A foolish child is a father’s ruin, and a quarrelsome wife is like the constant dripping of a leaky roof ~ Proverbs 19:13
Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife. Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and nagging wife ~ Proverbs 21:9, 19
A quarrelsome wife is like the dripping of a leaky roof in a rainstorm ~ Proverbs 27:15
We understood that nagging happens whenever the personality or character of the other person is attacked and one incessantly complains about things the spouse should be doing or pointing out his failures more often than not. Nagging goes hand in hand with contempt, causing the spouse to think and feel less of him/herself.
When we lose our connection, the more demands we place on you to work on our relationship. Sadly, the cycle starts again. We raise the issue (deemed as nagging), you become defensive (or stonewall), and we lose the ability to have any form of positive influence on each other. Many areas of life get affected, including physical intimacy. It is difficult to experience physical intimacy with one who doesn’t seem to be listening to you or paying attention to important matters. We believe you share similar sentiments; it is definitely hard to be intimate with an annoying wife.
While reflecting on why we get upset at certain issues, please understand how important they are to us. And perhaps we need to learn to wait, or find another solution. But there are things that must be dealt with, and we need you to help us get a solution. It would be good if you could tell us a time and give us airtime to talk about those issues. We are learning to reframe our questions and avoid looking like complainers.
Forgive us for the times we have thrown tantrums, gotten into a rage, shouted, controlled everything, nagged, and caused the home not to be a safe space. These things are what result in you feeling disrespected. We know that nagging is detrimental and can damage a relationship.
We are learning to apply the following ways:
- Walk away (and not in anger) from a situation instead of spewing hurtful words;
- Take care of our wellbeing. At times, we are just tired;
- Not take charge of the things you are supposed to do. After all, we hope you can see that they need to be acted upon;
- Refrain from raising an issue if we have already done so twice;
- Learn that we cannot control you because all you will do is withdraw;
- Share with someone credible that will support us, including seeking counselling; and
- Take our issues to the Lord in prayer as we seek wisdom to tame our tongues especially when we feel undervalued, unappreciated, and unheard.
We hope that you will not silence our thoughts, concerns or questions we have by labeling us nags. Try your best not to run away from your spouses, spending time in bars and parties because you do not wish to face the issues at home. Asking more than once does not make your wife a nag since that is not being obnoxiously persistent. Kindly refrain from using the word ‘nagging’ if your intention is to prevent your wives from asking what they desire. Sadly, we too notice the pattern and choose to remain silent and indifferent. Our self worth and self-esteem matter as well. Keep communication lines open. Do not count us as your enemies.
Let us learn to use encouraging words and choose the right time to speak.
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,
Cover photo by Snapwire