friendship

Husband bashing - are you guilty?

There’s a new sport at every lunch date with my married mates. And I don’t like it.

Are you guilty of ‘husband bashing’? It’s definitely the preferred pastime of my married friends right now and I really wish they would stop.

Every time we meet up for coffee or lunch we talk about the same old things – diet (fine by me), our children (even better) and then it begins. “My husband does this” and “My husband does that”. And they aren’t vague about it either. I walk away with intimate details about these couples and their husband’s shortcomings. It’s information I don’t want or need.

Since when did ‘husband bashing’ become an acceptable topic of conversation? It’s alarming. It’s also concerning that many of these women have similar complaints. Is it because all husbands are lacking when it comes to the same things or is it because they are feeding off each other, like a secret members’ club?

Since when did complaining about our husbands become an acceptable pastime?

I love my husband and I don't have any major complaints about him. He works incredibly long hours so he doesn't do as much around the house as I do. I work shorter hours, I'm better at some things than he is, and vice versa. We've just divided up the responsibilities, played to our strengths and moved on with our lives.

I feel like I'd be shunned if I piped up and defended the husbands in question and gave examples of how my husband and I make our lives run smoothly. What I really want to say is:

"Instead of focusing on what he doesn't do, tell me what he does do?"

"If you don't want sex as often as he does, discuss it with him and reach a compromise."

"Instead of feeling angry when he goes out at night, use that time to see your friends."

"If he always leaves his dirty clothes on the bedroom floor, put a basketball hoop above the dirty clothes basket."

I know some of this is lame advice but if it works, who cares? The things they complain about are always the same when it comes to their husbands - sex, work, money, kids...

I want to give them advice but it's pretty clear it's not welcome. The only contribution they want from me is to join in. Mostly I refuse to but I find myself going from umming and ahhing to giving them a few examples of how my husband is annoying, just so I can fit in. Then I feel terrible, and disloyal.

I'm not sure if it's just my circle of married friends who do this or not? Maybe I need new friends who are more positive. Because these husbands are pretty great as far as I am concerned. One husband hired his wife a limo as a surprise when she went shopping. Another organises ultra-romantic outings every month Thecomplaints these wives make are annoying but they are petty as far as I'm concerned. Plus, we all do things that annoy each other.

I really want to change the theme of our get-togethers. I want the 'husband bashing' to stop. But I have a funny feeling that if I say anything like this I'm the one who will no longer be invited and the 'husband bashing' will simply continue, unabated.

Is 'husband bashin' healthy and normal, or disloyal and negative?

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