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Hot Tips For Sexually Confident Wives #44

Don’t Get Mad… Get Sad… Then Get Glad- Part 2

This Hot Tip was inspired by a woman I met on a weekend retreat in Saskatoon…

Darlene bemoaned that when she comes home late at night, it’s often to a sink full of dirty dishes. Her husband has messed up the kitchen, then spent the evening on the computer or in front of the TV, but wants her to go upstairs to bed with him as soon as she gets home.

Of course, Darlene feels angry, put-upon, taken for granted, pulled in two different directions, etc. Understandable.

But women have the power to turn these situations around to work in our favor!

Consider these four different approaches that Darlene could have taken to that scenario, and contemplate which you’ll choose the next time you’re faced with a similar dilemma:

  • Response #1 – Get mad, send him on to bed alone, and do the dishes yourself, begrudgingly of course, withholding sex as punishment for his inconsiderate behavior. (bad choice, but the one that Darlene admits to making numerous times)
  • Response #2 – Get sad, then explain, “It’s disappointing to me to come home to a sink full of dirty dishes when what I really want to do is spend quality time with you. I can’t do both simultaneously – dishes and sex – and all I have the energy for is one or the other. Which do you prefer?” (and if he says “sex” ask if he’s going to get up early the next morning to take care of those dishes himself?!)
  • Response #3 – Simply say, “Honey, I really appreciate you feeding the kids dinner tonight. And I’d love to show my appreciation by floating your boat tonight, so would you mind giving me a hand with these dishes so we can go to bed together?” (much better approach)
  • Response #4 – Call on your way home from work to explain, “Honey, I confess… I’ve been having this fantasy all day… that I come home to a totally clean kitchen so I can walk right past it… and straight up to our bedroom with you! Are you game?”

Yeah, that last one would be the best approach, by far. Let him know in advance what kind of expectations, hopes, and dreams you have about how you spend your time at home, and chances are, he’s going to be much more inspired to live up to those expectations, fulfill your hopes, and perhaps even surpass your wildest dreams!

So which response will you choose next time? Will you get mad? Or get sad? Or be glad that you know just how to handle the situation, inspiring the intimacy you both long for rather than requiring it of him?

Hoping you’ll move beyond the madness… through the sadness… and discover the gladness in marriage!


Excerpted from The Sexually Confident Wife: Connecting with Your Husband Mind*Body*Heart*Spirit by Shannon Ethridge. Copyright 2008.  All Rights Reserved. Published by Random House Inc, New York, NY. Used by Permission. Not to be copied without Publisher’s prior written approval. 

Hot Tips For Sexually Confident Wives #43

Don’t Get Mad…Get Sad…Then Get Glad! Part 1

This Hot Tip is inspired by some of my most consistent life coaching clients, who’ve been making incredible strides toward turning their marriage around!
I’ll call them Victoria and Brent (but of course that’s not their real names)…
Brent is a typical people-pleaser (the kind of person who finds it hard to say “no” to anyone), so when his cell phone rang late one night, he answered it to discover a teenager from their church’s youth group in crisis mode, reaching out to him for counsel.
Victoria is a typical vacillator, (the kind of person who goes back and forth between “everything is great and I’m ALL IN this relationship!” and “everything sucks and I’m so OUT OF HERE!”), so when her husband took the bedtime S.O.S call from the teenager, she took it personally.
“You always put other people before me! You NEVER make me your #1 priority!” Victoria insisted, storming out of the bedroom and even leaving the house for added impact. She drove around for hours, crying hysterically over the situation and the deep sense of rejection she felt.
Question: Does Victoria’s response to the situation INSPIRE Brent to put his wife higher on his priority list? No, it feels to Brent like she is REQUIRING his time and attention, and that simply makes men want to dig their heels in even deeper. It took them days to iron out this big wrinkle and get back on the same smooth page again.
What would have been a better way to handle the situation? How could Victoria inspire the closeness she longs for with her husband rather than futilely attempting to require it?
She should have chosen to get SAD rather than MAD!
What would that look like? Rather than bite off his head and spit down his neck, simply and sweetly say to him, “I know that you love me more than anyone in the world, but there are times (like just now when you took that cell phone call at bedtime instead of snuggling with me) that I feel like I have to take a back seat. Could you maybe move me to the front seat again soon? Or better yet, join me in the back seat so we can make out like teenagers?” (that should get a snicker and a positive response from any husband!)
Yeah, it’s okay to calmly express your disappointment, then inspire him to meet your needs. It’s much more effective than angrily trying to require anything of him.
Try it. It works wonders. An angry wife will send him running for cover feeling like a big ZERO. A sincerely sad wife will inspire him to step up to the plate and be her big HERO — and then you’ll both feel glad!
There will be more insight about this creative approach to responding to your marital woes in the next Hot Tip, so stay tuned… :o)
Until then,
Excerpted from The Sexually Confident Wife: Connecting with Your Husband Mind*Body*Heart*Spirit by Shannon Ethridge. Copyright 2008.  All Rights Reserved. Published by Random House Inc, New York, NY. Used by Permission. Not to be copied without Publisher’s prior written approval.