Sharing too little seems to be a problem in most relationships… I found out the hard way that sharing too much can be as damaging in this particular situation. I feel like most marriage counseling books and seminars talk about the importance of not bottling in our feelings and sharing with our partner our frustrations but I actually have discovered that not all of my feelings should be shared with my husband.
Maybe at this moment someone out there is pulling their hairs off for what I just said (I am so sorry! if you don’t find this applicable to your situation you can ignore this and just skip to the Bible verse and conclusion) but for the rest of the step moms out there that have found themselves having more unnecessary arguments with their husband for sharing too much then you are on my team! (high five!–smiles…cries a little).
In my fantasy marriage I am able to tell my husband exactly how I feel at all times without any judgment or argument following. In my reality marriage I need to carefully decide which feelings are worth sharing with him and which are not. Why you ask? well, it’s simple (even though it took me a year to figure it out, and will take me a lifetime to perfect). Many of my feelings are temporary and aren’t rooted on “transcendent incidents” (incidents that will really affect the future of my relationship or my sanity). For example, should I tell my husband that my stepdaughter doesn’t respect my boundaries and gets into my room/closet/bathroom to explore everything I own and doesn’t stop doing it after asking her several times about it? —yes; Should I tell my husband that I’m in a bad mood because one of the kids left a mug with a little bit of chocolate milk somewhere in the house that I found four days later?–um, nope.
I don’t tell him because of these reasons:
- I don’t want to be complaining over every detail of my life that bothers me when it comes to his children-specially right after he gets home from work-I decided I don’t want to be that kind of wife.
- If I complain about his children often he will think I don’t love them or that I hate my life or that he isn’t making me happy enough—which aren’t true at all (that is a luxury that all biomoms get… no one will question their love for their children if they complain about them…)
- He will feel obligated to do something about the situation causing the kids to be annoyed or uncomfortable because they can’t be their normal selves around the house and also mad at me for being a “snitch”.
- They are just being kids and even if they were my own biological children I would probably have to do the same for them.
- I can just talk to the kids about it and ask them to be more mindful because rotten milk smell is not the best to have around the house (even though they will forget and do it anyway).
- I don’t want to waste a good communicational moment with something so insignificant.
- I don’t want to open up other issues that could come up that might be slightly related but should be spoken about on separate occasions.
- I don’t want to mix my present emotions with the incident because I’m Italian (yes, in order to have an assertive conversation all Italians must calm down and think about it first lol)
- and on, and on, and on…. (I have more but you get the point).
So to sum it up. I just want to express that I am breaking free from the chains of having the “perfect marriage” were I can communicate everything all the time because it just doesn’t work (for me at least). My reformulation of a perfect blended marriage would be to know which feelings are worth sharing in order to cause real change. Also, (very important) knowing the right way to express them as well as the right moment.
Usually my husband gets defensive when I talk about the children so I need to be extra careful when communicating my negative emotions. He also feels the pressure to make me happy and the pressure of making his kids happy (which is another topic we will cover in the future). So if I express to him all of my emotions (which you probably know are A LOT) he might not understand that all of this pain, anxiety, stress and sometimes anger won’t make me want to leave or regret my decision of marrying him.
And yes, I know I signed up for this life and that it will take a lot of work… I also don’t like the idea of not being able to just vent on my husband when I feel stressed out because sometimes all I need is just to say what I feel to be able to get over it. I just want to say it without having to worry about the consequences of words! but I can’t if I want to have a healthy marriage… it just won’t happen (it sucks.. I know!).
So I just say it to God. I say it out loud when I’m alone…. when I’m driving I cry out my thoughts through a song or I simply hang up the phone and yell as hard as I can. The beauty of it is that God knows exactly what just happened. He knows my heart and He knows I truly love the kids and my husband but sometimes life is just frustrating. He gets it and He hears me out.
“I bless God every chance I get;
my lungs expand with his praise.
I live and breathe God;
if things aren’t going well, hear this and be happy:
Join me in spreading the news;
together let’s get the word out.
God met me more than halfway,
he freed me from my anxious fears.
Look at him; give him your warmest smile.
Never hide your feelings from him.”
God is the only one who will never turn his back on you. He can handle you deepest feelings, frustrations and fears. Never hide from him… He will meet you more than halfway and give you peace.
SHARE: WHICH FEELINGS ARE YOU ABLE TO COMMUNICATE TO YOUR HUSBAND AT ALL TIMES AND WHICH ONES SHOULD YOU RECONSIDER BEFORE SHARING? WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED IN YOUR OWN MARRIAGE? IS SHARING REALLY CARING?