I’ve come to the conclusion most of us think the bad things our spouse does to us are worse than the bad things we do to them.
- “Sure I neglect ____, but my husband neglects ____, which is so much worse!”
- “I’d never do that to him. Yes I do _____, but there’s no comparison.”
- “All my friends say I get worse then I give.”
- “It’s not like it’s going to fall off. He ignores communication, which is much worse.”
Of course, none of these is a loving or biblical view, even if they are 100% correct. What makes it worse is we are judging someone else’s wants, needs, and pain based on our desires, thoughts, and feelings. If he were just like her, such reasoning would be valid. Thing is he’s not just like her.
Perhaps part of this is a misapplication or misunderstanding of the golden rule. Does doing unto others as you would have them do unto you mean doing to/for them the exact things you want them to do? Maybe it means meeting their needs the way you want them to meet your needs. Perhaps we’re to give as much as we want given, love as much as we desire to be loved, and sacrifice as much as we want others to sacrifice for us.
Certain deeply painful things he does to you would be minor or irrelevant if you did the same to him. Likewise you do things to him you would find nothing but he experiences with pain and frustration.
What would happen if you judged what you do to him based on how it makes him feel rather than how it would make you feel?
~ Paul – I’m XY, and while I will never fully understand why my wife feels what she feels, I want to know how she feels.