Many things make men and women different. As a woman myself, I have to say my favorite difference is that women tend to create more profound and more caring relationships with other women. Far more often than men do with each other. This is in line with my theory that men appreciate women mediators because they feel they can open up to a woman more than a man. And, because most of their guy friends do not want to hear a man talk about a failing marriage, we also tend to be their outlet person, the person they can talk to about their feelings and concerns. We, as women, are of course happy to oblige. It is what we do…
Back to why I believe the love of a good friend (or friends) may be a vital piece of happy marriages. There are times events will pop up in my life and depending on the issue, I may first think of my husband, but not always. Sometimes one of my girlfriends may be better equipped to handle the particular problem. So, I can take the issue to my husband, whom I know will not be able to help me, or I can take it to a girlfriend who I know will give me sound advice and do so in a caring a thoughtful manner. If I do the former, just because he is my husband and we should work everything out together… blah blah blah, I am setting myself up for disappointment and possibly could create a lingering resentment. That is not so fair for my husband because he is no better at communicating than any other man, even though he is married to a master communicator! It is like when he comes at me excited about a car, or Star Wars, or some other random thing that I have zero knowledge about. He is not going to get from me, what he could get from a guy friend who also loves cars and Star Wars. I am OK with this.
I don’t think it is necessary for a husband and wife to feel obligated to share everything with each other. Sometimes it makes sense to go to the person in your life that you know will “get it” and be happy to help. Rather than expect my husband to help me with something he has no experience with. And may not care about. I think our society puts way too much pressure on married couples to share everything, and care about everything your spouse cares about. If you can do that, more power to you, but if it creates more issues than it solves, why not go to a girlfriend instead? Just like we say “it takes a village” to raise a child… well, maybe it also takes a village to maintain a happy, healthy marriage that can endure the test of time. One person should not be the be all end all in your life. That is a LOT of pressure… I want my husband to come to me for important issues that may affect our family or our life, of course, as I will always bring such issues to him as well. But to discuss the new Star Wars… PLEASE… he can go, and chit-chat with the boys!
So get out there and connect with your friends, it could save your marriage! Need a mediator? Contact San Diego Family Mediation Center at (858) 736-2411 today!