Nobody wakes up in the morning and thinks to themselves “Hmm, what can I do to bulldoze my husband today”. So it often comes as a surprise when your husband gets angry or grouchy and you can’t find out why. Finally, when he gets mad enough, he might just tell you what you’re doing that’s so upsetting. But sometimes, he’ll do other things to cope – like having an affair, getting really into his work, or start drinking more. Either way bulldozing your spouse is not good. And if you knew some of the small things you’re doing that make him feel bulldozed you could stop a lot of problems before they become a big deal. Here are six things you’ve probably never thought of but is making your husband go crazy.
6 Ways You’re Unknowingly Bulldozing your Husband
“You’re not doing it right”. When you say this it usually means a couple things. 1) you’re looking over his shoulder as he’s doing something (can you say, controlling) and 2) you think he’s doing it wrong. Both of these mean you’re bulldozing him. And it’s assuming that you know better than he does. And, yes, he feels ALL of these when you say that. Remember, he’s a competent adult (that’s why you married him). Let him have some autonomy and finish the project. If it’s just driving you crazy watching him struggle because he’s not reading the instructions there’s no harm in going to the other room while he finishes.
“Oh, Just let me do it”. This one is pretty similar to the one above. It usually means that you’re looking over his shoulder AND you think he’s doing it wrong so you volunteer to do it instead. He’s a grown-up and is quite capable of loading the dishwasher, sweeping the floor, putting away groceries, etc. And last I checked there’s a not a right or wrong shelf for the macaroni and cheese. Let him take some responsibilities around the house. It might be annoying when he puts the spices on a different shelf but trust me, it’s worth it to keep from bulldozing your husband.
“You’re going the wrong way”. Okay, Seriously? He can’t even drive without you telling him what he should be doing instead. There are lots of ways to get to Target. And while your way may be faster/easier/have less lights/etc. He can get there just fine. And trust me. He has reasons for going the way that he’s going. Just let him drive.
“Not tonight, honey. I have a headache”. You have the right to say no to sex anytime you want. But just remember that when you’re not having sex, he’s not having sex, either. And while your decision to not have sex tonight is voluntary, his isn’t. You’re the one making the unilateral decision that we aren’t (and he’s not) having sex tonight. That doesn’t mean you should just do it out of obligation or pity. There are lots of good reasons to be having sex more regularly. What else are you going to do tonight?
“Okay kids, you can have a sleepover”. In our society, women are what’s called the ‘kin keepers’. It simply means that women are the ones more likely to keep up kinship relationships. They buy the birthday cards, call just to say hi, and are more involved with children, etc. But that doesn’t mean your husband doesn’t want to be involved. When you make a decision that the kids can have a sleepover, have friends over, or anything else without consulting your husband you’re bulldozing him as an equal parent in your relationship.
“I don’t want your friends coming over here. Just go out instead.” Guys have different hobbies and interests than women. You don’t like to have his friends over for poker the same as he doesn’t like it when you have your friends over to watch a Nicholas Sparks movie. But telling him to not have his friends over to a house that’s equally his as much as it is yours is bulldozing him.
About the Author:
Aaron Anderson is a therapist and Director of The Marriage and Family Clinic in Denver, CO. He is a writer, speaker and relationship expert. He specializes in working with couples learn to communicate and overcome sexual difficulties.