Rules of Engagement (Part 3)

It is a quarter past nine on this balmy evening in SoCal and I am putting fingers to keyboard to begin segment three of my relationship series Rules of Engagement.  Prior to starting this, I jotted down a handful of topics I wished to write about.  The topics came easily to me and all of them are vital to my own relationship with Hugo.  This topic in particular is something that Hugo and I talk about on a regular basis as we strive to continuously improve our own relationship.  And the second part of the topic is sometimes discussed at our dinner table, after we both come home from work with stories about obnoxious coworkers.  And so, part 3 is about speaking kindly to one another and of one another.

All couples talk every day, all day long, bicker now and then, and seriously argue on the occasional basis (hopefully no more than that).   Since you interact with your spouse nonstop (realistically, more than anyone else in the world), it is reasonable that over time you begin speaking to them not only in the most relaxed manner but also sometimes not in the most ideal way.  You might snap at them a little faster than you would with a friend or coworker. You also might use harsh or hurtful words when you argue with them.  In the heat of the moment, sometimes all bets are off.  However, none of the mean things we say, in the midst of an argument, do we mean.

We all get increasingly comfortable in routine environments in life.  The way I look at it is this:  treat and speak to your spouse as if the person you are speaking to is the most important person in your world.  Don’t take them for granted.  Remember how much you love them and if a stranger spoke unkindly to them, it would bother you.  Sometimes a good reminder about treating each other kindly is a good thing because it never hurts to try a little harder to be good to one another.

So that is the first part.  The second part moves from your relationship to the outside world.  Since your spouse or significant other is such a huge part of your life, it is inevitable that they come up in conversation with others very frequently.  I love my husband very much and I am proud of who he is as a good human being, my partner in life and a hard-working professional.  Because of this, I like talking about him.  A lot.  I brag about him and compare all other men I meet against him, because he is my standard for what a real man should be – honest, loving and real.

As you would imagine, based on how I write about Hugo, I speak very highly of him to everyone I know that will listen.  The same can’t be said of what I hear being said about other people’s spouses.  It is sad and shocking to hear how so many other people in the world speak about their loved ones.  It’s almost as if certain individuals think that it makes them look “cool” to make fun of, berate, or belittle their husbands or wives during conversation with other people.  I think that behavior is not only a testament to their relationship but also speaks loudly of their character.  The importance of speaking kindly of your spouse can’t just be measured by a bystander but think of the impact those sweet, or hurtful, words have on your husband or wife.

From personal experience, it warms my heart every time I am told about the nice things Hugo has to say about me.  It has happened many times and it never gets old.  To feel loved is an amazing feeling and we should all hope to make those close to us feel loved every day.

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