How Mums can Draw Forth the Best from Dad

Despite that fact that nagging is totally ineffective in motivating the men in our lives to do want we want, we women are sometimes slow learners! Instead of trying a different strategy, what do we do? We nag harder, louder and more shrilly. And when this too is ineffective, we conclude that our husbands are just hopeless.

Nagging will almost never work. And here’s why. Men will always resist when our style induces shame. Nagging implies incompetence, ill-will or selfishness – shaming judgements that disempower our hubbies and drive them them into withdrawal. If you want to see your husband fully engaged in the home, nagging is NOT the way to do it! 

Well, time for a change girlfriends! Let’s work on reversing the shame culture and start building a culture of respect. We start by quitting the nagging, the criticism, the snide remarks and non-verbal putdowns. Instead, affirm your hubby when he does good. Voice your appreciation often and consistently and he’ll soon work out what you like and want. Psychologists call this ‘positive reinforcement’ and we do it all the time with the kids – praising and cheering when they do something clever. Practicing respectful appreciation helps you focus on what he does well and will help you avoid self-pity and resentment building up in your relationship.

As featured in the September 2011 edition of CathFamily E-Magazine.

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Author: Francine & Byron Pirola

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