I was home chillin’ and reading a book by Esther Perel, sipping my coffee when a meme came in on my cell phone from my not married son. It was a group text to our family. I stopped what I was doing to read it. At the top was a picture of a woman drinking a glass of water.
The text read:
A woman goes to the Doctor, worried about her husband’s temper.
The Doctor asks: “What’s the problem?”
The woman says: “Doctor, I don’t know what to do. Every day my husband seems to lose his temper for no reason. It scares me.”
The Doctor says: “I have a cure for that. When it seems that your husband is getting angry, just take a glass of water and start swishing it in your mouth. Just swish and swish but don’t swallow it until he either leaves the room or calms down.”
Two weeks later the woman comes back to the doctor looking fresh and reborn.
The woman says: “Doctor that was a brilliant idea! Every time my husband started losing it, I swished with water. I swished and swished, and he calmed right down! How does a glass of water do that?”
What? That doesn’t make any sense at all. Should I risk looking stupid and text my Fam-group that I don’t get it? Sure, why not?
Me: “I don’t get it.”
My daughter: “Mmmm obvious punch line.”
My son-in-law: “Read it again. You probably didn’t see the last line.”
My daughter: “Press the pic Ma, then press it again so the borders go away and then you can see the punch line.”
The Doctor says: “The water itself does nothing. It’s keeping your mouth shut that does the trick.”
Me: “ROFL (rolling on the floor laughing).”
My daughter: “Lol! I’m laughing because you can’t use your phone.”
That got me laughing even more.
Why did I laugh so much? Because I could totally relate. Sometimes I just have to make my point and disregard how my husband is receiving what I am saying. But most of the time the best thing to do is to stop talking.
When he seems like the words coming out of your mouth are causing his blood pressure to rise there has to be a way for him to bring down the pressure.
How can he escape being out-worded? (That’s a term my husband uses.)
Here’s a tip…
Have a “safe phrase” he can say. Such as, “I hear you” or “OK, I got it” or “Let me process that” or whatever you both agree to, and once he says the “safe phrase” the words stop. If it’s something important, you can pick up the conversation at a later time. Or drop it all together. Ask yourself, “Do I really need to be saying this anyway?”
It could save your marriage.
Or at the very least make it better.
Enhance your marriage by giving him silence sometimes.
For more tips on building a healthy marriage order “From Me to We: A Premarital Guide for the Bride- and Groom- to- Be” by Lucille Williams, it’s not just for engaged couples. Join our community of grace-givers and subscribe to Lu Says today.