By Brie Gowen
What’s the first thing you do when something makes you angry or gets under your skin? You want to talk about it, right? If you’re like me then rant might be a better word. There’s something about spilling out our discord that seems to ease the frustration of it all, and while there’s nothing wrong with communicating your feelings, the popularity and frequency of social media use has taken it to a whole new level.
It’s so easy to quickly type out the first thing that pops into your head, but maybe you shouldn’t. And here’s why.
I still remember when my husband and I were dating at nineteen and after a gathering of several friends he was sullen and withdrawn. Upon questioning he confided to me that I had upset him by speaking comments in front of our friends that poked fun at him. I immediately felt horrible because I knew if the roles were reversed I’d be upset too. Although we have matured dramatically since that day some things have not changed, and I believe that if I spoke inappropriately about my husband in front of our friends it would most likely hurt him still.
Men and women are very different creatures; about that there is no doubt. But then again we are the same in so many ways. Men aren’t without feeling. They get hurt, angry, embarrassed, and filled with shame. So when we as wives openly and publicly shame our adult husband for a mistake they have made we are actually doing something that if the roles were reversed would be worthy of the doghouse.
When we correct our husbands publicly we are treating them like children rather than equal partners in marriage. When we make a mockery of their actions we’re saying we don’t care if they’re the butt of the joke. In essence the respect factor is reduced to nearly none, and though it might seem harmless to point out their faults in front of others, it really isn’t the epitome of love, honor, and cherish all the days of your life.
So what about if you’re sitting over there absolutely certain that it doesn’t bother your husband one iota when you roll out his faults for your friends like a red carpet? Well, despite whether it bothers him or not it is an invitation of sorts. It could easily be an open casting call for an eager home wrecker waiting to hone in on your man. That might sound like a stretch, but if you think your man is a catch like I do mine then you know there’s some petty ladies out there who don’t mind trying to stir up discontent in your marriage. So if you’re wrong, and your treatment of your spouse is leaving him wounded, you gotta know there’s a vixen waiting in the wings to stroke his ego for you. Bottom line, if anybody is stroking anything on my husband it’s going to be me. Just saying.
So, rather than emasculating your husband you should instead try building him up. If you’re going to speak anything publicly (especially on social media) about your spouse, it should be praise. Not only does he deserve better, but we all would desire the same. We should consider before we speak (or post), “would this hurt or embarrass my spouse?” Even if they will never see it, someone does. You should never say anything on social media you wouldn’t say to the other person’s face, and know that if you consistently share your unhappiness then someone might take that as a cue to cut into your marriage.
In the end the best idea is to pause, consider your own imperfections, and how your words might affect the person you love.
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
About the Author: Brie Gowen is a 30-something (sliding ever closer to 40-something) wife and mother. When she’s not loving on her hubby, chasing after the toddler or playing princess with her four-year-old, she enjoys cooking, reading and writing down her thoughts to share with others. Brie is also a huge lover of Jesus. She finds immense joy in the peace a relationship with her Savior provides, and she might just tell you about it sometime. She’d love for you to check out her blog at BrieGowen.com.