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Unsent Letter From A Wife

I write this after many weeks of contemplation and soul searching, and finally admitting my contribution to the difficulty in our marriage. I want to start fresh by listing the things I’m going to do differently from now on to show you my commitment to you, our marriage, and our family. From now on, I promise I will not…

  1. Bombard you with 10,000 questions when you come home after a night out.
  2. Go through your pocket, cell phone or computer.
  3. Bring up past fights and wrongs you have made.
  4. Cuss or call you degrading names.
  5. Hit you.
  6. Tell my friends you are horrible so they hate you and take my side.
  7. Threaten you with divorce every time we fight.
  8. Say I don’t want to have sex just to get back at you.
  9. Purposefully come up with last-minute plans to put you in a predicament.
  10. Point out your shortcomings to feel superior.

When I think about why we fight almost everyday, these are the things I do that came to mind. An these things, I now realize, come from my inadequacies and insecurities. They are mine and I shall keep them to myself. I now know solving and managing them is mine to do. And I will.

I have decided not to send this letter to you. I figured there is no value in giving it to you simply to tell you what I’m going to do. What matters is actually doing them.

In my perspective, this wife just realized that anything she does for the sake of her husband is really for the sake of their relationship. Furthermore, as a prominent and integral member of the relationship, she finally saw the light that anything she does for the benefit of the relationship — even if it may seem that she does it to her detriment — is ultimately for her benefit. By giving to her relationship she gives to herself.

The concept of having to contribute to the same pot as others — as we do with taxes — and feel shortchanged when the people who manage the pot use the funds collected for everything but what we want them to use it for, is challenging if not repugnant. However, it takes an abstract if not sophisticated view of the societal arrangement to realize that in a communal life — like in a marriage, not every sweat and treasure we contribute is for ourselves. We contribute to benefit the society we are a part of, and if our society benefits then so do we. This is civilized and it is pragmatic.

About the author

Dr. Tseday is a clinical psychologist and one of the country's leading experts in marriage, relationships, and self development. She advocates a unique and at times controversial approach to the dynamics of marriage and personal development, the necessary element for a successful relationship. Read more »

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