My cousin sent me a beautiful card on my wedding day. It had four columns wherein I could fill the quarrels I had with my husband, what it was about, who made up and how. By the end of our honeymoon, the card was filled to capacity and I had to trust my memory in future quarrels. This was 40 years ago. Today, the bride is luckier, for she can buy or be gifted with a computer which predicts wedded bliss, and has a data bank on quarrels, their nature and frequency.
Quarrels are the very essence of married life. Without them at frequent intervals, marriage will peter down to a bed and breakfast relationship. But too much of it can spell disaster. How does one balance the right number of quarrels? This is where a computer could help. How many of us can afford one? So, the alternative is to keep a checklist of points, on which one can quarrel without irreparable damage to either party.
Avoid any digs at each other’s relatives. “Your aunts talk incessantly, my aunts don’t” or “Your mother is a nag, my mother is fun”. “In our family we never stoop to the levels to which your family does…”these are just the kind of statements that don’t have any constructive results. Why not accept the fact that one has no choice in the matter of selecting relatives and hence is not to be blamed for their eccentricities?
Avoid comparing your spouse to other spouses- leads to fights which only breed bitterness, “Why can’t you come home at 5 like Kamla’s husband”… in your… petty mindedness, you forget that Kamla’s husband is a junior officer while yours is a general manager. “Why can’t you look glamorous like Mrs. Puri”? Don’t get carried away by outward appearances! Mrs. Puri perhaps cannot make the many delicacies your wife feeds you with!
So, don’t try to hit below the belt by drawing comparisons. You’ve made your choice for better or for worse. Bickering about it won’t get you far… only to the nearest divorce court!
Money can be quite a pain-especially absence or shortage of it. Many quarrels stem from this. Either one of the spouses or both will be a spendthrift or miserly. Getting at each other’s throats will not generate more funds. It’s better to calmly work out an incoming /outgoing list and see how best to balance the two. It’s not worth quarrelling about anyway.
Children are a great source of joy, provided you don’t make them the source of all your fights! You want to indulge your child while hubby wants to discipline him; hubby likes the child to be dressed in a particular way but you don’t agree. This can be very damaging to the child, who feels like the rope in a tug-of-war! Enjoy your children – quit quarrelling over them!
So, where does that leave you? What do you quarrel about to pep up your married life? Don’t despair. There is always the weather, the PM’s visit to five countries, the annual budget…if all that is not good enough, quarrel over who loves the other more!