Somewhere their wires got crossed. My husband insists he told them he wanted to pick up the green beans at noon. And I believe him. He is the most efficient man (no person) I have ever known. When he arrived, the restaurant was closed. He was stressed and wasn’t happy with them. We had eleven people coming for dinner in half an hour. Keep reading there’s a happy ending.
If this had happened to me I would have begin thinking, “I must have told them wrong. I probably gave them the wrong time. I should have checked to be sure they were going to be open that day.” And on and on I’d go trying to figure out how I messed up.
See men and women often react differently to situations. Most men look at the circumstances. Women blame themselves. Your husband might wonder why in the world you would take on the responsibility for something when it’s clearly someone else’s fault. You, on the other hand, may be thinking, “Well I could have made a mistake.” While you may be aware of these different gender patterns, it’s always easy to go to our default and react in our most familiar ways.
Well, I promised you a happy ending. My husband called a few minutes later. Don’t worry, “The restaurant is now open.” He had gotten there a little too early. I told you he was efficient!
As I walked into the family room, my husband was at the desk with the vacation folder out talking with someone on the phone.
After he hung up, I said, “I thought you were going to wait until we heard back from the children.” I assumed he had already gone ahead and made reservations for vacation. This is something we had talked about and agreed we would wait until everyone was on board.
“I was talking to them about the insurance we may want to take out in case one of us gets sick.”
“Oh!” See I had jumped to a conclusion. Do you ever do this? When we assume, all kinds of things can happen — misunderstandings, frustration, disrespect, communication divide, unnecessary conflict or our spouse may think we are trying to parent them.
A counselor friend of ours says, “We like to know, so in light of not knowing, we make assumptions. ” Not a good thing!
I bet when you read this you thought, “What?” When I say “fight” I’m not talking about a physical fight, but one of those inevitable disagreements we all encounter. In all honesty, we don’t have a lot of arguments, but when we do it causes us to take notice. Doing the kind of work we do at MERCY, it helps us understand how emotionally taxing it can be when you and your spouse aren’t getting along. It reminds us of how things can go from calm to loud in a matter of seconds. One says something; the other snaps back and off we go. Escalation has taken center stage. But it also forces us put those relationship skills we have been preaching to others into place. Take a time out! Huge! We need time to stop the drama and reflect. . .reflect on what happened, why it happened and pray the Lord will help us see the situation from the other’s perspective and that He will speak to our hearts as to what each of us needs to do differently. So for us, at least, good can often come out of those difficult situations.