There is so much advice floating out there on what a Good Wife should be. It starts hitting you from right about the time you are old enough to be married (and THAT is another topic altogether!). The advice continues flowing from all corners of the world-from well meaning friends to interfering relatives and even randoms who of course must always provide some kind of commentary and input.
What is sad is that in all this plethora of well intentioned but absolute rubbish, no real issues is ever addressed. Advice skims on good recipes, being there when he gets home, being pleasant, well kept, and all this is said in the most generic terms possible. OF course life is not this general at all, and one hardly uses mass advice.
A few weeks ago, a friend mentioned feeling like she was not a good wife, because she just couldn’t fix what her husband was going through, job-wise. She said he was feeling demotivated, tired and blah. “I’m trying to tell him it will pass but I feel maybe that is depressing him even more.”
The pressure is so intense to be the everything in your partners life these days. It’s like if you are married, nothing should ever afflict you again. There should be no depression, no tears, no demotivation, no simple blues and blahs anymore- simply because You Are Now Married. I told B that one of the most important things I think I have realized in my 15 married months is that lows are as much a part of marriage as the highs are. And learning to give space to each other to mourn on our own on any level becomes more important. I used to love a good solo sob every few months- even if it was triggered by something retardedly meaningless. It was a much needed negative energy release. I’d hate to think that one of my therapeutic sobs or wallowy lows was automatically associated with my partner.
A major part of being the good wife for me has been realizing that, no matter how wonderfully connected a couple you are, sometimes you just need to fight solo battles. And lose on your own. And win on your own. However, if you know you are being watched over from the sidelines, it’s the best feeling in the world.