Bad Mouth - AdobeStock_379609986Why shouldn’t we bad mouth our husbands? There are many reasons.

Two months ago, I was in the salon getting my hair braided. I always carry a novel with me because it keeps me busy for the several hours I must be seated. The fact that it also distracts me from the pain and discomfort is an added advantage.

This day I was reading Tis by Frank Mc Court — an awesome memoir. There were about three ladies braiding and chatting away. I was doing a great job ignoring them until one of them said “these men, what do they usually want? You feed them, look after the kids, and they still cheat. I honestly don’t know what do with mine,”

I was puzzled. Who says that about their man in public? I was waiting for the other ladies to quickly change the subject because of the discomfort they felt at their colleague’s outburst. But instead, they went on to share very intimate details of how their men were bad husbands and horrible fathers.

I was horrified. So, I politely told them “I am uncomfortable hearing all these things’ you are saying. Could you please change the subject?” You should have seen them stare at me in shock. The only thing that saved me from being told off was that I was the customer, and they needed to get paid.

A Lot of People Bad Mouth Their Spouses

This is not the first time this has happened to me in a hair salon. Whenever I express my displeasure at listening to their stories, I always get odd glances. These women expect me to agree with them in solidarity. And they probably even share my disappointments about my husband. It is an appalling habit that I detest; and as a wife, I want to tell you why you should never bad mouth your husband to anyone.

Don’t speak ill of your husband to your family. My sister once shared with me advice a married friend gave her. If your husband ever does anything wrong (and he will) never tell anyone in your family. The reason for this is that if you ever tell your family bad stuff about him, they will never look at him the same way. It could even be something as major as cheating; but please don’t.

Here’s the thing, even if you forgive him and go back to loving him, your family will always see him as a bad guy. Why? Because they love you and want the best for you. Reason number two is your family is not going to be objective. They certainly won’t show you where you may have gone wrong. To them you will always be their “nice little girl” and he will now be the “bastard who broke our little girl’s heart.”

Don’t Give into Bad Mouth Temptations

Don’t speak ill about you husband to male friends; and don’t entertain men talking ill about their spouses either.

This is not only wrong but also dangerous. Having a male friend who you tell about your husband’s shortcomings is a disaster waiting to happen. One of these days in a weak moment when your husband has angered you and your friend offers you a shoulder to lean, the friend zone line will get blurry; and then one of you will cross it. And that, my dear, is how affairs start.

Don’t speak ill about you husband to strangers. Don’t talk about him in the salon and in other women gatherings. The girls might even contribute their part; but you will come off as petty and completely lacking discretion. These people will not offer you any help on how to fix your marriage; they will just get fodder for gossip.

So, who do you talk to?

With all these people who not to talk to, who should you share with what you are going through? Since we all need someone to talk to, here are a few guidelines on who would be best to talk to:

• A good person to talk to is a close girlfriend who is also married — a lady who has a solid marriage.
• She should be sober minded. Sharing your marriage should not be gossip, the encounter should be helpful. Get someone who offers you a listening ear, but also give good advice. She should not be afraid to call you out when something is your fault.
• Another good person would be a friend who will pray for and with you. You need someone who when she says she’ll pray for you, she does.
• She should be able to keep a secret. The majority of the things you share will be so personal it would kill you if you had them somewhere else.

I have an amazing lady who has been both a mentor and a friend. I met her when my husband and I started dating. We needed a mentor couple to walk with us; and even after we got married, they have been helpful. We picked them because they have a solid marriage and values, we deemed very important. This lady is kind and very helpful and is not afraid to tell me when I’m wrong. Whenever I need advice on a marriage or faith issue, I can always trust her to help. Plus, she would not let me bad mouth my husband.

GOOD Friends Can Help

You, too, need a friend like that. Someone sober, caring and kind; and discreet too. This kind of friendship does not happen overnight but is something we constantly work on. However, even with such a great friend, use wisdom to know how much details to give.

There will many times your husband will offend you and make you angry. Because he is human, he will constantly fall short of your expectations. And he will not handle issues you raise as fast as you wish he would. There will also be equally many opportunities for you to talk to ill of him to someone. But resist the urge to bad mouth him to anyone.

Wanjiru Kihusa is a Christian family blogger from Kenya. She speaks and writes on marriage and relationships matters. A mother to one (in heaven), Wanjiru also speaks about miscarriages and grief caused by loss. She looks to encourage young people by giving sober and correct information about marriage and relationships.

This article was formerly posted on the web site, To Love, Honor, and Vacuum (which is now called Bare Marriage).