I came across this article last night, and I cannot stop thinking about it. In the piece, this man (Dan Pearce is his name) breaks down the 16 things that he did to contribute to the demise of his two marriages (he also wrote a follow up list of another 15) – first, the honesty that he showed with the things that he said is VERY humbling…I’ve had more than my share of blame over the demise of relationships (they’re probably all my fault, truth be told), and I know how very, very difficult it is to own what you did wrong – and to own it so publicly is truly something to behold. Second, this article was written by a MAN – and, while I love men more than most women do (she says in one of the greatest understatements ever made), I can certainly acknowledge their shortcomings in the areas of ‘owning up to their mistakes’ and ‘sharing emotions publicly’. I just really think his lists are humbling, and oh so very true – I can find many reasons on there that have contributed to the end of some of my own relationships…here are the things he advises to help you NOT blow up your marriage/relationship (read the full article – link up there – for details and explanations):
- Don’t stop holding her hand.
2. Don’t stop trying to be attractive.
- Don’t always point out her weaknesses.
4. Don’t stop cooking for her.
5. Don’t yell at your spouse.
6.Don’t call names.
7. Don’t be stingy with your money.
8. Don’t argue in front of the kids.
9. Don’t encourage each other to skip working out.
10. Don’t poop with the bathroom door open.
11. Don’t stop kissing her.
12. Don’t stop having fun together.
13. Don’t pressure each other.
14. Don’t label each other with negative labels.
15. Don’t skip out on things that are important to her.
16. Don’t emotionally distance yourself after a fight.
Great, right??! There are SO many things on there that can be used to help with any relationship that you have going on – loved ones, friends, children, co-workers (I imagine that heeding the advice to not poop with the bathroom door open would indeed help you win friends and influence people in the workplace), pretty much everyone. Here’s my take on this list – I agree with #1…I love love LOVE holding hands (as you know if you’re a regular reader, I write about this topic all the damn time), and I’m a firm believer in the idea that holding hands will carry you through most things. #2 makes perfect sense to me – I always try to fuss with my appearance…a) because I need all the help I can get, and b) you never know who is falling in love with you at any given moment, so you might as well give them something good to look at. 🙂 #3 makes a lot of sense to me – I loathe having my shortcomings pointed out by anyone, least of all someone who is meant to love me and be my biggest supporter…that kind of behavior is just NOT helpful. #4 sounds divine – anytime someone cooks for me is the very best time, so this one would win some MAJOR points with me. 🙂 #5 is a no-brainer…I don’t like being yelled at, so the chances of me yelling at someone else are pretty slim. The same goes for #6 – I’m not much of a name-caller (apart from pet names – I call everybody and their kitten a pet name), and I can confidently say that this is not something I’ve ever done to drive somebody away. I could not agree with #7 more – you can’t take money with you when you die, so you’d be better served to use it and spend it and make the most of it while you are alive. I hate it when one side of the couple makes the other side feel guilty about money spending…that’s just not fair. #8 is a non-negotiable, as far as I’m concerned. Children have such a short time to be children, so why shorten that time by forcing them to be part of your bullshit? Whatever you’re upset about can most certainly wait, I promise. #9 – I just want my sweet baboo to feel happy and healthy…if they want to work out to get there, three cheers for them – if they would rather use their P90X videos to cure their wretched case of insomnia, then that is fine, too. I just know that, when it comes to everyone that I love and care about, I want them around for a LONG time. 🙂 #10 – I used to think that this was just common sense, but…I may be coming around on this one. Perhaps the couple that poops together stays together??! Either way, peeing in front of each other is fine…and actually kind of endearing. 😉 #11 is GREAT – kissing is good fun and should happen ALL THE DAMN TIME!!! 🙂 You can’t kiss somebody and still be pissy with them, so…more kissing! #12 is one that hits pretty close to home with me, as I have lost a relationship that I valued to this one…we just stopped having fun. I understand that life isn’t always a non-stop party and that there are times when shit has to get done…but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun whilst taking care of the shit, does it? I think it’s SO important for couples to continue to woo each other, whether they’ve been together 2 weeks or 22 years…whether they are married, dating, or both (with different people). You can’t put a price tag on how great it feels to have fun and be woo’d, and, truthfully, it doesn’t cost much to do it up right – so pull a Nike, friends…and JUST DO IT! 🙂 I’m getting the squirmies about #13 a wee bit – I’ve been known to resort to this tactic, and it’s no good…I shouldn’t have done it, and I know how little I care for it when it has been done to me. Pressuring people to do what you want defeats the whole purpose of getting what you want – because you will always know that it was an ill-gotten gain, and that you only got it because of the pressure you put on…and that just stinks. 😦 I most certainly don’t do #14 – read what I wrote about the sweet, romantic, cutesy-til-you-barf pet names up there, and you will see that negative labels are just like calling names to me – a place that I do not go. #15 is a biggie for me, as well…I have had the unfortunate life experience that whoever I have been with, life has become pretty much ALL about them. I have thrown my support behind them/their careers/their interests…while very little has come back towards me. Why the hell is that? Am I not interesting? Am I not fascinating and worthy of the attention? Most days I kind of think I am (see that? the whole self-love idea is actually starting to sink in!!! Holy shit – look out, world!) – and I can’t imagine how exciting it would be to have someone interested in the things that I am doing. Now, to say that I’ve never received that kind of support is unfair – of course I have, just not to the same degree with which I’ve given it, which is unfortunate, but…perhaps someday that will change. Or it won’t. Either way, I will be fine. 🙂 And, finally #16 – this is something that I personally NEVER do, simply because I can’t contemplate how much that kind of behavior would hurt me. It would be AWFUL to be completely shut out from someone you care for, and…I’m just not having any part of that.
Isn’t this a great article? You really need to check it out, and be sure to read the other 15 things as well – his entire blog, Single Dad Laughing, is really great…but this list in particular is pretty mind-blowing to me. :)I love you, my beauties, and I hope that you’re having yourselves a beautiful day! 🙂 Now, go on and love someone! 🙂