If you walked into a room you could actually feel the difference between:
Women using their gifts, talents, or experiences, to help empower, teach, or inspire another woman who needs help, direction, or advice when it comes to her husband or their marriage-
and a woman who is throwing herself a husband bash-sesh,
who is secretly hoping to suck everyone with a vagina into her husband-hating, soul- sucking, vortex.
These are two completely different environments.
One is positive
(not perfect) but gives off vibes that aren’t debilitating to others, but creates more of a supportive place…
and the other–
….the bashing, it creates a tense, awkward, toxic atmosphere.
that just feels wrong.
These particular sessions can often feel friendly or fun in the beginning,
but can quickly turn into women one-upping each other.
Listen. As a woman, I know that we need other women to encourage us, to relate to, to get advice from, and sometimes- we simply need them to listen to us and nothing more.
I just hate, (yes, hate)
I hate being in the room when a bashing festival is going on.
Bystanders are left feeling super awkward.
Everyone’s usually masking or feeling some level of discomfort.
People are left wondering what the right move actually is.
Others are secretly searching for a fire escape or making mental notes of what they need at the grocery store.
In the end, everyone usually ends up feeling pretty sucky and completely drained.
(Hence the difference between the two environments and approaches)
Having been the awkward bystander who has endured some of these toxic play dates…
Here are 5 Things that incessant husband bashing inadvertently tells me:
*You are choosing to retreat.
You are in the middle of a battle, and you are running the wrong way.
Each negative, mean, hateful, spiteful, or chronic complaint is contributing to this rift that you so badly want bridged…yet every single shit*y thing that you say is only creating more distance between you, your husband, and your peace. Don’t alienate yourself from him.
Seek wise counsel + constructive feedback from people who love you and who desperately want to help you keep your marriage together.
*You aren’t at all interested in utilizing constructive solutions.
There’s a HUGE difference between seeking wise counsel, or speaking with someone in confidence, and whining or incessantly complaining anytime you have the mic in a group of girl friends.
-Venting is more like expressing your feelings; sharing the status of those feelings with a person that you trust. There is definitely therapeutic value in allowing yourself to openly share, and in considering another person’s constructive feedback. There is also value in having a reliable support and encouragement when we just don’t feel motivated to keep pushing.
-Chronically complaining or ‘bashing’ on the other hand is simply you making your husband look like an as* in front of people who he probably knows and has to see. The motive here is not to seek any real support or encouragement. That isn’t what you are looking for.
*You just want generic confirmation that you are right and he is wrong.
This is a quick fix. Like an emotional band-aid.
You end up with a truck load of useless ‘that’s too bad’ or a sore shoulder from all of the pats on the back. You feel a little bit better when someone else begrudgingly chimes in to play this game with you. Hearing the collective ‘ooh’s and ahh’s’ ,occasional gasping, or seeing the eye rolling of the other wives in the room-all temporarily make the real problems seem a little bit less terrifying.
(None of which will actually help to mend your marriage.)
But then again, mending your marriage is not the primary goal of husband bashing.
*Maybe you don’t know what else to do.
Your tool box is empty. Your reference point is off. Your fear is paralyzing your logic. Guilt from shaming him so much internally and socially is hindering your ability to do something useful.
You rely on that generic support. The character assassinations have become your norm.
You are legitimately hurting and are feeling angry. You aren’t handling whatever the situation is productively, but the bottom line is,
you just don’t know what else to do.
*You still care.
So the good news is, when you husband bash his brains all over the place, it shows listeners that you still care. If you didn’t, you would not be inappropriately seeking help for this laundry list of things that you feel that you can’t tolerate anymore. You would not risk embarrassing your husband. You wouldn’t put yourself through the agony of apologizing to everyone later for overstepping boundaries that you already knew you were crossing when you opened your mouth.
An apathetic stance seems to be the opposite of love, and if husband bashing tells me anything it’s that you still care deeply about this man, and your marriage.
So there’s that. I am writing this to help you to reconsider this technique of solving marital problems. I cannot express how odd it feels to be put in this situation. Asking or forcing a person to contribute or absorb this kind of negative stuff is a ridiculous position to put people in.
It’s pretty much a lose lose for everyone.
I am not writing this to express to the world how perfect my marriage is either.
We have had our rough patches, believe me. I have chosen him to be my life partner. I am grateful for him and I am choosing to respect him. I am an imperfect, moody, mistake-maker too. I suck at things, I am great at other things, but at the end of the day, any time I run to someone else to complain about him, I am missing an opportunity to communicate with my husband.
We are on the same team.
I know some people will hate this post, and others will relate.
Either way, I appreciate you reading and welcome your feedback.
Feel free to connect with Discovering Beautiful on Facebook and let me know what you think.